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Former Jaguars RB Taylor visits Bills; Patriots up next

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Former Jaguars running back Fred Taylor got a head start on the NFL free-agency period, visiting with the Buffalo Bills on Tuesday.

Taylor, released last week by Jacksonville, also was scheduled to meet with the New England Patriots later in the afternoon. The running back, 33, is looking to latch onto a new team after spending 11 seasons with the Jaguars.

Free agents can begin signing with new teams Friday.

Career Statistics
Seasons: 11

Carries: 2,428

Rushing Yards: 11,271

Touchdowns: 62

"At the end of the day, my No. 1 objective is to get somewhere and compete," Taylor said after his Buffalo visit. "Nothing is going to be given to me. I don't expect that."

How Taylor would fit in with the Bills isn't known. With Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson firmly in place, Taylor could be the third man in a crowded backfield.

But Lynch's status is up in the air after he was charged with three gun-related misdemeanors after his arrest earlier this month in Southern California. Because it was his second off-field incident in the past year, Lynch faces a possible fine and suspension from the league.

"My job is to just come in and be a helper, and not stir up any problems or anything like that," Taylor said. "I've been sharing my whole life."

The Bills, though, have shown no indication they are interested in releasing or trading Lynch, and Taylor said he wouldn't mind being a possible mentor to the 22-year-old.

"He's young with so much potential," Taylor said about Lynch. "Not saying I'm looking to be a father figure to anyone or anything like that, but I know what I've gone through throughout my career. But the team hasn't said anything along that nature."

With 11,271 yards, Taylor ranks 16th on the NFL's career rushing list, and he's within striking distance of passing Jim Brown (12,312).

"That's a part of the process, but at the end of the day, that's not the ultimate goal," Taylor said. "I do want a ring."

Taylor, Jacksonville's career rushing leader, was scheduled to make $6 million next season before the Jaguars released him.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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