BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – In a surprise move as the team trims its roster down to 53-players, the Bills released running back LeSean McCoy, News 4 Sports Director Josh Reed confirmed Saturday morning.
ESPN was first to report the roster move.
In a conference call, general manager Brandon Beane said cutting McCoy was a tough decision. “It went through the night and the morning,” said Beane. “We have to make the best decision for our team and we felt it was the right time to make this move.” The GM also added the organization did look to get a return for the running back.
“Anytime you’re going to release a player, you definitely check around,” said Beane. “We did look around to see if there was a right fit, we did not find that.” Beane also said McCoy has a chance to choose his destination, a right he’s earned.
McCoy, who Beane and Sean McDermott said was the starter at running back early in the spring, was looking for a bounce-back year after recording career lows in yards, 514, and yards per attempt (3.2) in 2018. He also scored just three rushing touchdowns — the fewest in a single season since joining the Bills in 2015, when he also had just three touchdowns on the ground.
In the off-season, the Bills brought in McCoy’s longtime friend and veteran running back Frank Gore, 36, to share duties in the backfield. They also drafted Devin Singletary in the third round in this year’s NFL Draft.
“We still believe LeSean can play, but Devin Singletary transitioned faster, and we believe he’ll be able to help us sooner than later,” said Beane. “We feel Devin can give us contributions, and the’s ready to roll and that went into the decision.”
Singletary ran for more than 4600 yards and scored 67 rushing touchdowns during his three year career at Florida Atlantic.
McCoy, 31, has rushed for 10,606 yards and scored 69 career touchdowns in his 10-year career.
Beane made a point of emphasis on how difficult the decision to cut McCoy was. “This is not the first tough decision we’ve had to make,” said Beane. ” What the Pegula’s have asked me and Sean (McDermott) to do is to make the best decision for the Buffalo Bills. Some work great, and some don’t.”
The Bills have until 4 p.m. to trim the roster down to 53-players.