Jul 25, 2019;  Pittsford, NY, USA;  Buffalo Bills cornerback E.J. Gaines (26) during training camp at St. John Fisher. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

News Articles

Bills CB Gaines opting out for family reasons

Buffalo Bills cornerback E.J. Gaines is opting out of the 2020 season for family reasons.

Bills general manager Brandon Beane told reporters the news on a Zoom call Sunday morning.

Gaines, 28, is the second Buffalo player to opt out due to the coronavirus pandemic, joining defensive tackle Star Lotulelei.

Gaines will miss his second straight season. He suffered a core muscle injury last August and was released by the Bills with an injury settlement. He re-signed with Buffalo on a one-year deal in free agency in March.

Drafted in the sixth round by the St. Louis Rams in 2014, Gaines has recorded 198 tackles, four interceptions and 33 passes defensed in 43 games (38 starts) with the Rams (2014, 2016), Bills (2017) and Cleveland Browns (2018).

The window for NFL players to opt out ends on Tuesday.

Players considered high risk for COVID-19 can earn a $350,000 stipend and an accrued NFL season if they decide to opt out. Players without risk can receive $150,000, according to the agreement approved last week by the league and the NFL Players Association, although the voluntary opt-out stipend is solely an advance toward future salary. The stipend is not available to undrafted rookies.

Also on Sunday, the Bills signed cornerback Akeem King and defensive tackle Niles Scott.

King, 27, recorded 17 tackles in 13 games (three starts) with the Seattle Seahawks last season. He has 39 tackles in 34 career games with the Atlanta Falcons (2015) and Seattle (2018-19).

Scott, 24, had four tackles in six games with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2018 before spending last season on injured reserve after hurting his foot.

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