2. Ryan Poles thought he had Ryan Bates
The Chicago Bears knew that adding Ryan Bates was not a lock. When they offered him a contract, they knew the Buffalo Bills could match the deal and there would be nothing that they could do. They did it anyway. Unfortunately for them, the Bills did match.
Ryan Poles just so happened to be giving his interview at the owner’s meetings when the news came across. His first reaction was one that fans can familiarize themselves with.
As Poles noted, if the Bills wanted him they could keep him, and there is nothing the team could do. Of course, fans are screaming that the team could have offered more money or a strong contract. Still, reports are that the Bears were very aggressive in the deal and that the Bills’ hesitance can speak to it.
A four-year deal with two years fully guaranteed is pretty hefty. Especially when you consider that Ryan Bates is a former UDFA who has four career starts. That is aggressive and it did push the Bills to the max.
To be fair to Ryan Poles in this case, he probably played this right. He offered a strong deal, one that he thought that Buffalo would not match. In fact, Buffalo had to scramble and ultimately realized that a tender would have been cheaper than a restricted tag. So, Poles made them pay 1.25 on the dollar.
Fans will be disappointed but anything more for Ryan Bates is a bit of drastic overpay. The Bears need line help, but can’t be paying high-end starter money for the potential. It was a good risk but did not pay off. Poles is disappointed but now has to move on.