One of the best interior lineman in the entire NFL, Andy Levitre, has been the starting Left Guard for the Buffalo Bills since he was drafted in the 2nd round in 2009 and hasn’t missed a game. Reports are that the Bills haven’t even offered Levitre a contract as he is bound to hit the free agent market on March 12th and cash-in big time.
If this is true, this is nothing short of a slap in the face to the unsung hero of the franchise. When former left tackle Demetress Bell went down with an injury, he stepped in and held his own to say the least. Speaking of Bell, at least they made him an offer last off-season before he walked away. People have said “Levitre is replaceable”. That is far from the truth as interior linemen are the most valuable players on the team and they are the first ones that are pulled to set up blocks on screen plays. In addition, they help the quarterback call opposing team’s defensive blitz packages and coverages.
Breaking the bank for Levitre would be absurd, however giving him a reasonable 6-year, $30 million contract with half of the money guaranteed would be an excellent deal for him and it is cap friendly for the team. If he walks because it’s not enough money, at least the team tried to make an effort to keep one of their own to build more for the future. The Bills are currently approximately $20 million under the salary cap for the 2013 season which is a good number compared to some teams that are still over that magical $123 million hard salary cap.