Bills, Bengals frontrunners for Coles?

BFR's Pat Moran provides the latest on Laveranues Coles. The Bills and Bengals appear to be the top landing spots for the former Jet. And a decision could come Monday. The scoop inside...

The Buffalo Bills are attempting to bolster their sagging passing game by signing Laveranues Coles. Buffalo along with Miami were destinations Coles was supposed decide on, but reports out of Miami indicate the Dolphins are no longer interested.

However, Cincinnati, anticipating losing T.J. Houshmandzadeh, is emerging as a player for Coles' services. A report from states the Bengals are now interested.

The Bills have formally made Coles an offer. The terms are not yet know. Coles is expected to make his decision by Monday.

Many people expected Buffalo to target after a bigger receiver as a red zone target, but what most don't know about Coles is that despite his 5-11, 193 pound frame, he's plenty productive inside the red zone. Over the past two years, 10 of his 13 touchdown receptions have come from the 15-yard line or closer.

Coles has 8,095 yards receiving in his nine-year career, including three 1,000-yard seasons, most recently in 2006. Last year Coles had 850 yards on 70 receptions and seven touchdowns. For his career, Coles has 631 receptions and 44 touchdowns.

While his most productive days statistically are probably behind him, Coles would bring experience and consistent production to a Bills offense that ranked only 22nd last year in passing yards.

With Coles on board, this would put Josh Reed into a third receiver role in the slot -- a position he's better suited for.

The Bills would then have seven receivers on the roster; Coles, Reed, Lee Evans, Steve Johnson, Roscoe Parrish, James Hardy and Justin Jenkins. Even with Hardy's knee a major issue for 2009, the team would likely make a move to trim a receiver from the roster. Parrish could become a prime candidate to get traded, due to his added value as a punt returner. He's due to count about $2.7 million against the cap in 2009, a number the team may find too high for a fourth or fifth receiver.

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