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Bears to meet with Bills RFA Ryan Bates

NFL: AUG 21 Preseason - Bills at Bears Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

On Tuesday the Chicago Bears will meet with offensive lineman Ryan Bates, who is a restricted free agent, this according to the Chicago Tribune’s Brad Biggs, The Buffalo Bills currently hold Bates’ rights, and since they tendered him at the Right of First Refusal level, that means if Bates accepts an offer from another team the Bills can match it to retain him. If Buffalo allows Bates to leave they’ll receive no draft pick compensation.

Bates’ current Right of First Refusal contract with the Bills is $2.4 million for the 2022 season, and so far he’s met with the Vikings and Patriots.

The 25-year old Bates was originally an undrafted free agent of the Eagles in 2019 from Penn State, and that year current Bears assistant general manager Ian Cunningham was Philly’s assistant director of player personnel. In August of 2019 the Eagles traded him to the Bills for veteran linebacker Eli Harold, and he’s been in Buffalo ever since.

In his three years with the Bills he’s appeared in 41 games and he had 4 starts during the 2022 regular season. He also started both of their postseason games last year. Most of his time as a pro has been spent at guard, but his versatility to play anywhere has been what has kept him on Buffalo's roster.

Our sister site that covers the Bills, Buffalo Rumblings, has a nice All-22 film review of his play from last season right here.