The Buffalo Bills’ secondary is getting weaker this offseason as they appear to be losing cornerback Stephon Gilmore. Of course, that loss cannot be celebrated too much by Miami Dolphins fans, as it appears Gilmore will be signing with the New England Patriots when the free agency signing period opens Thursday afternoon.
According to both ESPN and NFL Network, the Patriots are set to sign Gilmore, and it will not be to a small contract:
Bills free agent CB Stephon Gilmore expects to sign with New England barring any final snags, per sources.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 9, 2017
The #Patriots are closing in on signing free agent CB Stephon Gilmore, source said. Means they will say bye to Logan Ryan.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2017
The expected price tag for free agent CB Stephon Gilmore for the #Patriots is slated to eclipse $14M per year, I’m told. Hefty but worth it— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 9, 2017
According to a post from SB Nation’s Buffalo Rumblings in January, Gilmore made no secret of his desire to be paid among the top cornerbacks in the league, including having these cleats designed, which he had planned to wear for the team’s Week 17 game but “logistical issues” prevented Gilmore from receiving them in time:
There are four cornerbacks in the league who currently exceed the $14 million per season threshold, headlined by the $16.7 million for Trumaine Johnson, followed by Josh Norman ($15.0 million), Patrick Peterson ($14.0 million), and Richard Sherman ($14.0 million).
Gilmore was selected with the tenth overall selection in the 2012 NFL Draft by the Bills, playing five seasons for the team. He recorded 225 tackles, 14 interceptions, 62 passes defensed, three forced fumbles, and one fumble recoveries since being selected. He is 26-years-old and is 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, and worked primarily as a right cornerback with the Bills early in his career, but was asked to shadow top opposing receivers in recent years.