As NFL teams make roster cuts to get to a 53-man roster, the Buffalo Bills made a shocking move with their cuts.
After signing tight-end O.J. Howard to a contract this offseason, the team cut him on Tuesday.
The move comes as a shock, as Howard was a solid tight-end during his time in the NFL.
However, the Bills saw something that led them to cut him, putting him back onto the free agency market.
The move was also a costly one, as Howard is getting over $2.5 million from the Bills in guaranteed money and his signing bonus.
So why didn’t the Bills want him anymore?
Bills Seem To Believe In Tommy Sweeney
The end of the NFL preseason went great for tight end Tommy Sweeney.
With his play in the preseason impressing OC Ken Dorsey, it was no surprise he’s still in Buffalo.
Ken Dorsey says TE Tommy Sweeney has made some "substantial strides" in his game this preseason. #BillsMafia
— Jenna Cottrell (@JennaCottrell) August 23, 2022
His rollercoaster ride of a 2022 now ends with him as the second tight end behind Dawson Knox.
When the Bills brought in Howard, he was the guy set to take over Sweeney’s spot.
However, Sweeney’s performance was enough to survive with a team not needing many tight ends.
But the story of Howard’s release is more than Sweeney being successful.
He had his issues, which many fans saw as a death note for him in Buffalo.
Howard’s Poor Mini Camp And Preseason Would End His Time In Buffalo
While not everything was horrible for Howard with the Bills, most of his play with the team was a disappointment to them.
The Bills didn’t get that great tight end they saw from prior years in Tampa Bay.
What they got was someone who couldn’t perform or move like they thought.
Before O.J. Howard came to the #Bills, I really couldn’t understand why he had a very limited role in TB, with other TEs not named Gronk jumping ahead.
Then I watched him at every practice and preseason game over last few months and it makes sense.
Can’t move like used to.
— Jon Scott (@JonScottTV) August 30, 2022
However, that doesn’t mean all is lost for Howard.
Maybe he can find that old version of himself that made him a first-round pick.
It’s the player the Bills thought they were getting from him this season.
Former 1st-rounder O.J. Howard was once projected to be the best TE prospect coming out of that 2017 draft…
Entering his 6th season, his original team doesnt want him, the Bills just cut him…
— Mike Hernandez (@MadmanMikeDD) August 30, 2022
So where is his next destination as NFL teams seek to sign him?
Browns And Bengals Might Serve As New Landing Spot For Howard
Two teams who might show an interest in the former first-round pick are the Browns and Bengals.
The Browns love to run two tight end sets, something meaning they can use some depth at the position.
As for the Bengals, they need a clear top tight end to pair with Joe Burrow.
While Howard isn’t a top tight end, he’s the best one available for either team.
If he can re-ignite that passion and play from his years in college, either team that gets him is getting an instant upgrade.
But it’s the Bengals who need the former first-rounder the most.
They have no standout tight end on a team that made last season’s Super Bowl.
If they want another Super Bowl run, he might give them a little added chance of repeating.
With the NFL kicking off the regular season soon, teams will need to move quickly on Howard.