NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday that the veteran cornerback will show up for this week’s mandatory minicamp, per a source informed of his plans. Gilmore sat out of Buffalo’s organized team activities while mired in long-term contract talks with the front office.
Rapoport noted in May that negotiations weren’t particularly contentious. General manager Doug Whaley also said this offseason that he was “actively” trying to extend Gilmore, but The Buffalo News reported Saturday that a new deal “does not appear imminent.”
Entering the final year of his rookie pact, Gilmore — who underwent shoulder surgery in December — is set to cost $11 million against the salary cap. He rolls into September as an unquestioned starter across from the talented Ronald Darby.
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Whaley has made it a priority to re-sign his own key players, handing out rich deals to left tackle Cordy Glenn and defensive lineman Marcell Dareus. With the value coach Rex Ryan places on cornerbacks, we’d expect something to get done with Gilmore in time, but these are the kind of talks that could stretch into the season.
Bills general manager Doug Whaley has pegged the defensive end out of Clemson as a Week 1 starter, provided he’s not on the physically unable to perform list. Last month, Lawson underwent surgery on his right shoulder in what was described as a preventative procedure by the team.
Lawson, whose shoulder issues were a cause of concern for some scouts at the NFL Scouting Combine in February, said at the time he wouldn’t need surgery. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported in May that Lawson likely will begin training camp on the PUP list and there’s a chance he could still be on that list by the time the regular season begins.
“I’m still engaged in meetings and things like that,” Lawson said, via the team. “Engaged in practice and watching film. I continue to watch film like I’m still out there playing. I’m taking a lot of mental reps. I’m not physically able to do it, but a lot of mental reps. Seeing things with the older guys, things like that.”
Galloping through the hostile, freezing Western New York weather, Bell ran for a franchise-record and career-best 236 yards and three touchdowns in Pittsburgh’s 27-20 win. The patient tailback added 62 receiving yards, upping his total yards from scrimmage on the afternoon to 298.
The Steelers went back to Bell’s well again and again in the harsh environs. The back earned touches on 42 on Pittsburgh’s 73 plays, a career-high for Bell.
It was a sign of things to come for Pittsburgh’s evolving offense. Once heavily relying on Ben Roethlisberger’s arm to move the ball, the Steelers’ attack was in the midst of refocusing its strategy when Bell broke for his big game. In Pittsburgh’s final nine games, Bell went over 100 yards on the ground seven times.
The back’s ballet in Buffalo was the apex of that run.
Courtyard’s Greatness on the Road Award is given to the player who demonstrates the best performance in a road game during the regular season. NFL Media analysts selected Bell’s Week 14 play as the pinnacle of “Greatness On The Road.”