The Buffalo Bills and star wide receiver Stevie Johnson are engaged in contract talks. However, talks seem to be going slow and the two sides are “far apart” in discussions. According to the Associated Press, Johnson does not expect the Bills to use the franchise tag on him if a long-term deal is not reached.
Just last week, the two sides exchanged proposals, but it appears there has been little to no progress.
Buffalo hasn’t used the franchise tag since 2006, when they used it on Nate Clements, so it would come as a surprise if they chose to use the tag now. Granted there would be no better choice than to use the tag on the man who led the team in receiving each of the past two seasons.
Johnson is an incredibly talented receiver, though his antics can be a little over-the-top at times and rub people the wrong way. If you can get past that, he is worth the hassle.
If the Bills can’t lock up Johnson or give him the money he deserves, someone will, but you have to think Buffalo needs to keep him. The Bills are a surging young team and losing a guy like Johnson could be crushing to their development.
The two sides still have some time to work out their differences, so we will have to see if they come any closer together before the start of free agency.
Here are some of Johnson’s celebrations over the years: