Jairus Byrd signed a one-year, 6.9 million dollar contract with the Buffalo Bills Tuesday, ending his holdout. Nfl.com reported that he will report to camp on Thursday, giving him about two and a half weeks to prepare for the season under new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine.
Thick and rich: Jairus Byrd inked a one-year deal with the Bills, hoping to lock in a lucrative multi-year package at the end of the season. The Bills retained the ability to rename him their franchise player next winter. (Rick Havner, AP photo)
Byrd had 17 interceptions in his Duck career and was Defensive MVP of the 2008 Holiday Bowl victory over Oklahoma State. As a 2nd round draft pick and NFL rookie in 2009 he had a league-high nine interceptions and was voted to the Pro Bowl but was unable to play because of injury. In his 5 years in the NFL he has 18 interceptions, and 10 forced fumbles.
The Bills designated the veteran safety as their franchise player in March of this year, prompting Byrd and his agent to hold out for a long-term deal that would have placed him among the highest-paid safeties in the game. The Bills balked, and under NFL rules, the window for signing a multi-year deal has passed.
Last season Byrd, the son of former San Diego Charger Gill Byrd (1983-1992, a two-time Pro Bowler with 42 career interceptions), had 76 tackles and 5 picks. He returned an interception for touchdown in both 2010 and 2011, and has played in all 16 games in each of the last three seasons.
Buffalo travels to Washington for a preseason game this Saturday, kickoff 1:30 p.m. Pacific time on the NFL Network.