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Bills still evaluating Watkins ahead of option deadline

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  • By Jeremy Bergman NFL.com
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One week of OTAs has drawn Sean McDermott and the Bills no closer to a resolution regarding Sammy Watkins' fifth-year option.

The first-year coach told reporters Thursday, "Sammy is a good player. He's in a good spot. He's attacking the rehab. We have to continue to evaluate."

In a bubble, McDermott's no-answer answer would not be worthy of six more speculative paragraphs. But with a deadline looming and a week of up-close evaluation under his belt, the coach's indecision might spell a bad sign for Watkins' future with the team.

Couple McDermott's response with last weekend's report that the Bills were hesitant to pick up the oft-injured wideout's option of the 2018 season, and you have yourself a situation brewing in Orchard Park.

The Bills have until May 3 to make a decision, and NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport said Monday he would be surprised if the Bills didn't pick up the wideout's fifth year.

If that ends up being the case, the Bills will shell out around $13 million in 2018, more than double what the receiver is earning in 2017. If the Bills pass on the option, the team can offer a more cap-friendly extension during the season or, if Watkins' injuries continue to hinder his game, let the receiver walk into free agency.

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