Bills Predicted to Part Ways With Fan-Favorite Receiver This Summer

Bills Predicted to Part Ways With Fan-Favorite Receiver This Summer

Andy Isabella runs after making a catch in a Buffalo Bills preseason game.

 

The Buffalo Bills saw some major departures from their wide receiving corps this offseason, and one analyst believes another fan-favorite could be on his way out the door.

 

The Bills traded top receiver Stefon Diggs to the Houston Texans and watched No. 2 Gabe Davis leave in free agency, with depth receivers Trent Sherfield and Deonte Harty also leaving. Syracuse.com’s Matt Parrino wrote that another incumbent receiver could be headed out the door, predicting that speedy Andy Isabella will miss the final roster cut at the end of the summer.

 

Bills Made Some Big Changes to Wide Receiver Room

Parrino predicted that the wide receiving corps will have a very different look in Buffalo next season, with just one player back on the roster who saw significant playing time in 2023 — third-year slot receiver Khalil Shakir.

 

Parrino predicted the Bills will keep seven receivers next season, with free agency acquisition Curtis Samuel and second-round draft pick Keon Coleman leading the way.

 

He also predicted roster spots for new acquisitions Mack Hollins and Chase Claypool, along with K.J. Hamler, a former second-round pick who was signed in January to a futures contract. Justin Shorter, a 2023 draft pick who missed his rookie season on injured reserve, rounds out the wide receiver room in Parrino’s roster projection.

 

That leaves Isabella on the outside of the roster bubble. The Bills originally signed Isabella late in training camp last summer and the speedy receiver and return specialist made an immediate impact. As Nick Sabato of the Niagara Gazette noted, Isabella’s performance in the final preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts turned heads.

 

“But during the last week, the 5-foot-9 Isabella appears to be climbing the depth chart, getting second-string action with three catches for 42 yards against the Colts during the first preseason game Saturday,” he wrote.

 

Isabella, who spent time with the Arizona Cardinals and Baltimore Ravens before joining the Bills, ultimately landed on the practice squad but was elevated for two games. He became a popular player among fans, with many suggesting the team should give him a bigger role in the offense.

 

Bills Handing Out Second Chances

Parrino predicted that the Bills might give new life to two receivers with careers hit by adversity. Claypool had a strong start to his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, making 121 receptions for 1,733 yards and 11 touchdowns over his first two seasons. But he saw a sharp drop in production after that, ending last season with eight total catches for 77 yards and a touchdown.

 

Hamler has also struggled with injuries over the course of his career, but could find an important role on a Bills team that lost its top deep threat, Parrino predicted.

 

“The truth is that both players are (cheap) dice rolls by [general manager Brandon] Beane,” Parrino wrote. “Hamler hasn’t been relevant in years because of injuries, and Claypool has worn out his welcome everywhere he’s been. But the Bills need to find a deep-ball threat. Gabe Davis was their best option last season, but he’s gone, and so is Stefon Diggs.”

 

 

Gideon Canice

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