In the NFL, careers are made up of announcements. From the moment a player declares for the draft until that final farewell when they hang it up, every move, regardless of importance, is broadcast. When Jerry Hughes was drafted in round one by the Indianapolis Colts in 2010, it was major news. When the Buffalo Bills traded for him in 2013, it was major news. After a career of moments just like these, one particular announcement may break our hearts.
Yes, the once longest-tenured Buffalo Bill is now a Houston Texan. Jerry is, of course, a Texas native. His return to his roots isn’t unwarranted. Still, it stings. To say goodbye to a player who played his part in breaking the drought, and a significant role in the defense that helped return us to prominence once again, it’s difficult. How can we summarize the man?
Jerry Hughes: Buffalo’s Best
Jerry would always do what it took to get out onto the field and perform. Playing through an array of injuries over his career, he only missed games when absolutely necessary. When we needed him, he was there. We can’t forget his three-sack performance in the 2019 Wild Card game. He took down Lamar Jackson in the backfield twice in the historic 17-3 Divisional Round win against the Ravens in 2020.
He finishes as fourth on the Buffalo Bills’ all-time sack leaderboard with 53, behind only Bruce Smith, fellow TCU alumni Aaron Schobel, and the great Phil Hansen. Here he is with his second of two career touchdowns:
Still, stats don’t do it justice. The heart of the defensive line, and the leader who took the mantle from the beloved Kyle Williams, Hughes was more than a player. Though his time in Buffalo is at an end, he’s not ready to hang up the cleats just yet. The Houston Texans can expect some good snaps out of the defensive end. Jerry is a competitor.
Though your time in Buffalo may have come to an end, we all know it’s not the last time we’ll hear your name called, Jerry. It won’t be long until the stadium is huddled around you once again, raising your name up to the Wall of Fame with the other Buffalo Bills legends.
Goodbye, Jerry. We’ll see you again soon.