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Thursday, March 6, 2014
Bills hosting LB Jasper Brinkley on visit

By Mike Rodak

The Bills are hosting linebacker Jasper Brinkley on a visit Thursday.

Brinkley, 28, was released by the Arizona Cardinals last month. In 15 games last season, he made three starts, tallying 27 tackles. He spent the first four seasons of his career with the Minnesota Vikings after being drafted in the fifth round out of South Carolina.

At 6-foot-1, 252 pounds, Brinkley is similar in size to Jameel McClain, whom the Bills hosted on a free-agent visit Wednesday. Both players project to middle linebacker in a 4-3 scheme but also have experience as inside linebackers in a 3-4 scheme.

Both visits suggest that the Bills are taking a hard look at the free-agent market at linebacker, where their depth was thin last season. Arthur Moats is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent, leaving Kiko Alonso and Nigel Bradham as the top options on the roster for middle and weakside linebacker.

Other news: The Bills took care of some free-agent housekeeping Thursday, re-signing cornerback Brandon Smith to an undisclosed deal. Smith was scheduled to become an exclusive-rights free agent. Meanwhile, the Bills tendered contracts to their other three exclusive-rights free agents: fullback Frank Summers, wide receiver Chris Hogan, and guard Antoine McClain. All three are expected to sign their tenders and join the Bills' offseason roster.