Bills re-sign Levi Wallace and Robert Foster

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By WGR 550 SportsRadio

The Buffalo Bills have re-signed Exclusive Rights Free Agents cornerback Levi Wallace and wide receiver Robert Foster, as well as exercised their 2020 club option on offensive lineman Spencer Long, a league source has confirmed to WGR.

In addition, the team is still “working on” tight end Jason Croom’s ERFA status, according to the source.

When players are ERFAs, a team only has to offer them the minimum salary for their accrued seasons in the league to retain their rights and not allow them to negotiate with other teams. Only players on expiring contracts with less than three accrued seasons qualify for the status.

Foster was thought, by most, to be a big part of the offense last year after posting over 500 yards over the final seven games of 2018. However, something went wrong with that plan, and he was strangely not even a part of the passing game all season long, catching just three passes for 64 yards. Was it injuries? Was it chemistry with quarterback Josh Allen? Was it work ethic? Was it not knowing the offense? Whatever it was, 2019 was essentially a lost season for Foster, who was active for 13 games, almost exclusively for special teams use. Now he’ll have a chance to have a bounce-back season and prove he belongs on the field.

Wallace was the primary cornerback starter opposite Tre’Davious White to start last year, but began to struggle midway through the season as teams started going away from White and began targeting him much more often. Although Wallace remained the starter, he and Kevin Johnson rotated every couple series throughout games. Wallace seemed better for it, but that’s not the ideal model for the team going forward. They’d love to have one, steady, reliable player there. He’ll have a chance to battler that spot again, including competing with veteran Josh Norman, who the team has reportedly agreed to terms with. 

Long was a very valuable reserve last season after signing as a street free agent in February after being released by the New York Jets. Every team needs a player like him. He was the perfect interior swingman, able to play both guard and center, and should be exactly that again next season. He may even have a bigger role and chance to compete for a starting job depending on what the team does with pending free agent Quinton Spain.

As far as Croom, he was the Bills’ leading tight end in catches (22) and yards (259) in 2018. He may have been in danger of not making the roster in 2019, but an injury allowed the team to put him on injured reserve and give him another shot next season. He offers good athleticism and can be a nice option in the receiving game, but with the competition in front of and around him, including Dawson Knox, Tommy Sweeney, and Nate Becker, it will probably be an uphill battle if the team does re-sign him. If they don’t, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent, free to sign with any team.

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