Bills add help to banged-up secondary

The Bills sign cornerback Dontae Johnson and release defensive end Nate Orchard

Brayton Wilson
October 02, 2018 - 12:38 pm

Photo: Kelley L Cox - USA TODAY Sports

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With injuries affecting the Buffalo Bills' secondary, the team needed to add some depth heading into their Week 5 matchup with the Tennessee Titans at New Era Field.

On Tuesday, the Bills addressed their need with the signing of fifth-year veteran Dontae Johnson to a one-year deal. To make room for Johnson on the 53-man roster, the team released defensive tackle Nate Orchard.

The 26-year-old cornerback comes to Buffalo after being released by the Seattle Seahawks this past Thursday. Johnson signed a deal with the Seahawks in April, but suffered a groin injury before the start of the season and was placed on injured reserve.

Johnson (6' 2", 200-pounds) was a former fourth round pick (129th overall) of the San Francisco 49ers in the 2014 NFL Draft out of North Carolina State. In his four seasons in the Bay Area, Johnson registered 158 combined tackles to go along with two interceptions, one of which returned for a touchdown last season. He also played in all but one game in his first four years, and started all 16 games for the 49ers in 2017.

Bills head coach Sean McDermott said on Monday that safety Micah Hyde will be week-to-week with a groin injury suffered on Sunday in Green Bay. Buffalo has also been without cornerback Phillip Gaines, who's missed the last two weeks with an elbow injury. In addition, rookie cornerback Taron Johnson has been dealing with a banged-up shoulder since Week 1 against the Baltimore Ravens.

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