One of the biggest needs for the Buffalo Bills this offseason is wide receiver. There is no question that the Bills must upgrade this position before the start of the 2019 season. They could address this need through the draft and take a guy like D.K. Metcalf early in the first round or pay big money for a guy like Tyrell Williams in free agency. However, consider this: When was the last time the Bills had a reliable and consistent slot receiver? Was it Josh Reed, who last played a decade ago? It’s time the Bills address this glaring need.
Insert Adam Humphries. Humphries has been on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the past four seasons and has gotten better each year. The undrafted wide receiver out of Clemson first came into the league in 2015, where he hauled in 27 catches for 260 yards and one touchdown. The next two seasons Humphries put up solid numbers as he had 116 catches for 1,253 yards, and three touchdowns. However, this past season Humphries had his best year yet, despite a constantly rotating quarterback carousel in Tampa Bay between Jamies Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick. He had 76 catches, for 816 yards and five touchdowns. What these numbers tell you is that Humphries has gotten better each year and despite the inconsistency at quarterback this season for the Bucs, both Winston and Fitzpatrick clearly trusted and relied on Humphries.
Another reason why Humphries should be a Buffalo Bills is that he fits the culture in Buffalo. He is a Sean McDermott guy to the “T”, Humphreys was an undrafted receiver, who worked his tail off to become the player he is today. He’s exactly the type of player that this regime loves. A no-nonsense, go to work type of guy.
Now going back to what I said about the Bills needing a slot receiver you might be thinking, “Why do the Bills need a slot receiver so badly if they could use help on the outside?” and that’s a very good question. Let me ask you this. Who won the super bowl MVP this season? Answer: Julian Edelman, a slot receiver. Also, is it a coincidence that when Aaron Rodgers was at his best, Randle Cobb was too? I think not. A quality slot receiver can go a long way in making an offense much better.
The main reason why I think the Bills need to bring in Humphries is simple. Just watch the tape of Josh Allen. Once the Bills got rid of Kelvin Benjamin and Andre Holmes, allowing guys like Robert Foster and Isaiah McKenzie to have bigger roles, I noticed that Allen would constantly be looking for McKenzie on third downs. This tells me that Allen uses that slot receiver to move the chains. Now no disrespect to McKenzie, but he is by no means a real presence or threat to defenses. Yet, Allen still looked for him a lot on those key downs. So, imagine if Allen had a talented and legitimate threat in the slot. It could be huge for Allen’s development.
Lastly, the two final reasons why Humphries is the guy the Bills must bring in over say a Tyrell Williams is this; Humphries is only 26 and should not be anywhere near as expensive as a guy like Williams. He’s in the prime in his career and you can get him on a relatively team-friendly contract. I expect Humphries to be in that nine million per year range which is a bargain when compared to Williams, who should be around 11-12 million per year.
Humphries needs to be a Buffalo Bill. The slot receiver in this league has become so important in order to have a top-flight offense. It’s no surprise that almost every team in this past postseason has a good slot receiver. From Cooper Kupp with the Rams and Cole Beasley with the Cowboys to Golden Tate with the Eagles, the picture is clear. If Buffalo wants their passing game to take that next step, a way to help that cause is to bring in a good slot receiver, and there may be no better guy than Adam Humphries.
Mitch Broder is a contributor for Buffalo Fanatics. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @mitchell_broder