Bills unlikely to franchise Johnson

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The Buffalo Bills and receiver Stevie Johnson exchanged proposals last week on a contract extension, but now a report from the Associated Press says the two sides are “far apart” in their negotiations.

The two sides are expected to meet and perhaps exchange more figures at the Combine that begins this week in Indianapolis, but the report says the Bills probably won't put the $9.6 million franchise tag on the receiver who has posted two straight 1,000-yard receiving seasons.

If that is the case, then time is definitely ticking on Johnson's career as a Bill, as free agency begins March 13. If Johnson gets to the open market, someone may decide to outbid Buffalo for the productive wide receiver.

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