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Bills cut Star Lotulelei after restocking defensive line

March 18, 2022 GMT

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills released starting defensive tackle Star Lotulelei on Friday in a move which frees up much-needed salary cap space at a position the team spent restocking in free agency this week.

The ninth-year player, who sat out the 2020 season for COVID-19 reasons, had two seasons left on a five-year, $50 million contract he signed with Buffalo in free agency in 2018. Lotulelei was Buffalo’s primary run-stuffer, and had 40 starts in 43 games with the Bills.

He was limited to playing just 11 games last season, including missing three on the COVID-19 list. Lotulelei spent his first five NFL seasons in Carolina.

Cutting Lotulelei was an expected move, and came a day after coach Sean McDermott would only say, “we’ll see,” when asked how the player fit into Buffalo’s revamped defense. The Bills also lost fellow starting defensive tackle Harrison Phillips in free agency.

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Aside from signing edge rusher Von Miller to a six-year contract this week, Buffalo restocked its defensive line by adding free-agent tackles Jordan Phillips, Tim Settle and DaQuan Jones.

The Bills also announced the signing of linebacker Marquel Lee to a one-year contract. Lee has four seasons of NFL experience since the Raiders selected him in the fifth round of the 2017 draft. He appeared in 11 games last season, and has 19 starts in 45 games.

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