It’s official, the Buffalo Bills have signed cornerback Phillip Gaines. The visit was first reported by Mike Garafolo.
CB Phillip Gaines will visit the Bills last week, source says. Visited the Colts this week. Former third-round pick of the Chiefs will be moving on from KC, it seems.
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 24, 2018
The visit must have gone well because he chose to sign on with the team.
We’ve signed CB Phillip Gaines.
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) March 29, 2018
Gaines was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in the 3rd round of the 2014 draft. In 2017, Gaines had 268 pass snaps and allowed 27 receptions on 45 targets for 420 yards and 2 TDs, one interception and a pass deflection, according to PFF.
CB Phillip Gaines – Kansas City
2017 Stats Per PFF
Total pass snaps 268
Slot (Johnson’s stats)
Snaps 216 (423)
Targets 34 (83)
Receptions 20 (59)
Yds 331 (603)
TDs 2 (2)
INTs 0 (0) pic.twitter.com/d8Hv5UqKAL
— Cover 1 (@Cover_1_) March 24, 2018
Gaines was exposed in the Kansas City Chiefs’ scheme, very similar to how E.J. Gaines was with the Rams. Defensive coordinator Bob Sutton has employed a 3-4 scheme in K.C., one that heavily emphasizes man coverage. Gaines took a majority of his snaps in the slot, but regardless of where he lined up he allowed too many big plays. In 2017, Gaines surrendered 15.6 yards per reception.
Hearing that new #Bills CB Phillip Gaines will be part of competition for slot CB role.
— Chris Brown (@ChrisBrownBills) March 29, 2018
Having a 6’1″ 193 pound corner in the slot could help the Bills defend bigger slot receivers and help protect the seam when they choose to play their cover 3. Former slot corner Leonard Johnson (5’10” 203 pounds) is familiar with the defense that HC Sean McDermott and DC Leslie Frazier employ, but there were times he was taken advantage of.
The Bills are looking to fill out their defensive backfield after losing starting cornerback E.J. Gaines in free agency last week, and having not yet re-signed slot cornerback Leonard Johnson. While the College scouts are heavily scouting the upcoming draft class, the Bills’ Pro Scouts are continuously looking for free agents to fill roles on the roster. Can Leslie Frazier make use of Gaines’s skillset alongside standout Tre’Davious White and new addition Vontae Davis? Regardless, the Bills’ secondary will look starkly different come next season.