Buffalo Bills star free safety Jairus Byrd wants to become the highest-paid safety in the NFL, and that’s always been his goal ever since receiving the franchise tag last offseason. It’s clear that Byrd never wanted to play another snap for the Bills organization, and it would have been stupid for the Bills to franchise him and create a second straight offseason of sagas. Byrd’s time in Buffalo is undoubtedly up, and he rejected a contract from them that would have made him the highest-paid safety in the game for some portion of his deal.
Byrd wants to be the highest-paid safety in the game for his entire contract, and I would be surprised if he doesn’t get it this offseason. Players generally make more money with each successive offseason, and Byrd will most likely be the subject of a massive bidding war this March. Arguably the best free agent set to hit the open market, there is no argument that Byrd is the best safety, and teams crave elite safeties more than ever, especially when looking at the success of Earl Thomas. Byrd isn’t quite as good, but he’s certainly good enough to replicate some of what Thomas can do, and that’s exactly why he’s going to receive a monster deal.
The Bleacher Report’s Dan Pompei reports that “the word on the street” is that Byrd wants more than $9 million per year. That’s an incredible amount of money, but the 27-year-old has a great chance of getting that kind of a contract. Teams like the Cleveland Browns should show significant interest, and his ball skills will only further his market.