Bills give WR Cole Beasley permission to seek a trade

Wide receiver Cole Beasley may not be on the Buffalo Bills next season, and it appears that's entirely by choice. According to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, the Bills have granted Beasley permission to seek a trade. The news was later confirmed to NFL Network by Bills general manager Brandon Beane.

Despite Beasley's desire to be traded away from Buffalo, Beane told Garafolo that the team would be happy to welcome Beasley back next year.

"No door has been closed," Beane said.

Beasley is due $6.1 million next year as part of a four-year deal he signed with the Bills in 2019, which consists of $4.9 million base salary, a $1 million roster bonus, and a $200,000 workout bonus. He's entering the final year of that contract, and Garafolo suggested that one of the reasons he wants to leave is to get a new contract that pays him bigger bucks.

Beasley, who will be 33 in April, spent the first seven seasons of his career with the Dallas Cowboys. Since signing with the Bills he's looked great, and had a career year in 2020 with 82 receptions for 967 yards. He matched that reception total in 2021, but his yards per catch fell to 8.5. That's the lowest since his rookie year in 2012, and it ranks him 125 out of 152 qualifying players in 2021.

If your favorite team didn't play Beasley, you might remember him for other reasons. He caused a stir last offseason when he posted his thoughts against the COVID-19 vaccine on Twitter, even replying to people who criticized his reasoning. The unvaccinated Beasley missed Week 16 when he was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list, and reportedly racked up over $100,000 in fines for violations of NFL health and safety protocols.

ORCHARD PARK, NY - JANUARY 09: Cole Beasley #11 of the Buffalo Bills on the bench against the New York Jets at Highmark Stadium on January 9, 2022 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)
Wide receiver Cole Beasley has been given permission by the Bills to seek a trade. (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)