It seemed like like a quality depth signing for Buffalo. Aaron Williams and Corey Graham are penciled in as the team's starting safety duo, but both players enter the season with questions surrounding them. Williams suffered a serious neck injury in 2015 and he's openly stated that he could call it quits after he takes on contact this off-season. Buffalo has sounded optimistic about Williams entering this season, but no one would blame the player if he were to retire. As for Graham, the safety took poor angles at times and struggled in coverage for the Bills as the season wore on. At 30 years old, Graham may be on the decline.
For those reasons, having Blanton as depth makes plenty of sense. As it turns out, Blanton will have every opportunity to unseat this duo in training camp and during the preseason. Ty Dunne of The Buffalo News wrote that Blanton was told he'd have the chance to start with the Bills. From Dunne's article:
He chatted with defensive backs coaches Tim McDonald and Ed Reed about the Bills’ defense. He ate at Buffalo Chophouse on Franklin Street. And, most importantly, he was told that he’d have a chance to start at safety in this defense
So the free agent signed on the dotted line.
In four seasons with the Vikings, Blanton recorded 213 total tackles, five passes defensed, and one interception. Blanton's most notable season came in 2014 when he started in 13 games with the Vikings. During that season, Blanton recorded 106 total tackles, two passes defensed and one interception.
Blanton is also expected to serve on special teams with the Bills.