The new front office of the Buffalo Bills have begun sweeping out the mistakes of the previous decision-makers, announcing on Tuesday that they had terminated the contract of defensive end Mark Anderson.
Anderson, 30, joined the Bills as a free agent last season, signing a four-year, $19.5 million deal that included $7.9 million in guaranteed money and up to $8 million in incentives. The thought process was that Anderson, who had 10 sacks for the New England Patriots in 2011, would pair with defensive end Mario Williams to create a formidable pass-rushing duo. Unfortunately for the Bills, Anderson battled a knee injury all season, appearing in just the first five games of the season and totaling 12 tackles and one sack in 244 official defensive snaps.
With the Bills moving back to a 3-4 defense under coordinator Mike Pettine, and the 6-foot-4, 255-pound defensive end coming off multiple knee surgeries, Anderson was likely going to play a "third down/pass rush specialist" role for the team this season. With Anderson now off the roster, those duties could fall to Jerry Hughes, a former first-round pick of the Indianapolis Colts was traded to the Bills earlier this offseason.
By releasing Anderson, which does not come as a surprise to "Shutdown Corner", the Bills save $2.4 million in cash as the guaranteed portion of his contract all came due in Year 1 of the deal. The Bills will take a serious cap hit, however, with $1.6 million applying to their 2013 cap and $3 million in signing bonus proration accelerating onto their 2014 cap.