March 6, 2013
Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is due a $3 million roster bonus on March 13, but the Bills still aren't giving any indication whether or not they plan to pay it.
General Manager Buddy Nix said Tuesday that the team is still working though its options in regard to Fitzpatrick, who has a $4.25 million salary for the 2013 season in addition to the roster bonus and a $200,000 workout bonus. Nix wouldn't say whether or not the team was prepared to ask Fitzpatrick to restructure his deal, saying it was matter that he'd discuss directly with the quarterback.
"Any talking, I'll do with him," Nix said, via the Associated Press.
Complicating matters on the restructure front is the fact that the Bills would save only $450,000 under the cap by cutting Fitzpatrick instead of keeping him on the roster. Swallowing $10 million in dead money isn't easy for any team, even if the prospect of starting Fitzpatrick is no longer one that appeals to the team. Having said that, Fitzpatrick might not have a better chance to play, even as a bridge to a rookie, and that could be the point of emphasis while discussing a way to bring his salary to a more reasonable number.
Nix also said that the team is mulling how to proceed with negotiations on a new deal with guard Andy Levitre, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent next week. Franchising safety Jarius Byrd locked up $6.9 million under the salary cap, a number that could make it hard for them to get a deal done with Levitre before the open market gets a whack at signing him.