Bills convinced Incognito is changed person

A Miami Dolphins fan holds a sign for Richie Incognito during a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on November 11, 2013 in Tampa, Florida (AFP Photo/Mike Ehrmann) (Getty/AFP/File)

Buffalo (AFP) - Richie Incognito, the offensive lineman at the heart of the Miami Dolphins 2013 locker room bullying scandal, signed Monday with the Buffalo Bills after missing the whole of the 2014 NFL season.

Incognito, a 10-year NFL veteran with 102 career starts, missed the final eight games of the 2013 campaign after being suspended by the Dolphins for repeatedly harassing fellow blocker Jonathan Martin.

The scandal led to a league investigation overseen by attorney Ted Wells that uncovered racially insulting e-mails and remarks to other Dolphins locker room workers.

Even though the NFL ban on Incognito expired before this past season, he went unsigned after workouts with Tampa Bay, Kansas City and Denver.

"We are convinced that Richie is prepared to move forward and has and will continue to take the necessary steps to improve himself as a person and a teammate," Bills owner Terry Pegula said.

"Following discussion with the rest of the coaching staff, we as an organization will provide him with the opportunity to do so."

The Bills were able to sign Incognito ahead of next month's free agency opening because he was not on a team roster last season.

Incognito, 31, played three games for the Bills late in the 2009 campaign after being claimed off waivers from the St. Louis Rams.

The move comes less than a month after the Bills made former New York Jets handler Rex Ryan their coach, replacing Doug Marrone, who opted out of his contract after Buffalo went 9-7 last season, their first winning season since 2004.

Ryan was sacked by the Jets last December a day after they finished 4-12, giving Ryan a 46-50 record in six seasons with New York.