Bills still interested in former Bucs’ DE Ryan Russell

Bucky Gleason

The Bills have continued to show interest in defensive end Ryan Russell after meeting with the free agent in May. According to insider Ian Rappoport, he was scheduled to meet with the Bills again on Saturday.

Russell, entering his fourth season, spent the past two seasons with Tampa Bay after Dallas selected the former Purdue star in the fifth round of the 2015 draft. He played only one game with his hometown Cowboys before getting more action with the Bucs. He had two sacks and 12 tackles in 14 games, including six starts, last season.

The Bills have been looking to add talent and depth at all positions along their defensive line. Russell (6-5, 275) wouldn’t be an impact player but could help create competition in training camp. He also could give them flexibility with their roster.

Buffalo’s search for help at defensive end continues to raise questions about their faith in Shaq Lawson, a holdover from the Rex Ryan-Doug Whaley Era. The former first-round pick has underperformed since he arrived in the NFL.

Bills coach Sean McDermott made it clear that Lawson needed to raise his level of play this season. Lawson had suggested last month that he felt like he was on the trading block. He could be right.

McDermott and GM Brandon Beane have been restructuring the roster since they arrive. They have no reservations about shipping out players who were in Buffalo under the previous regime, especially if they’re not giving the Bills enough value.