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The Buffalo Bills are still reeling with emotions from their devastating overtime playoff loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, January 23, and wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders made it clear that he has no time for anyone trying to drag his name through the mud.
On Tuesday, with the wounds from the 42-36 loss at Arrowhead Stadium still fresh, a Chiefs fan said it was “karma” for Buffalo to lose due to the veteran receiver’s previous dealings with the Chiefs.
The fan tweeted, “Emmanuel Sanders is still paying for what he did to the Chiefs back in 2014. It’s called karma.”
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Before the start of the 2014 NFL season, Sanders was a free agent after spending the first four years of his career with the team that initially drafted him in the 2010 NFL Draft, the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Chiefs believed they had secured a deal with Sanders, who ultimately signed a three-year, $15 million deal with the Denver Broncos.
Kansas City accused Sanders’ agent Steve Weinberg of shopping his offered deal around to other teams, as reported by SB Nation. As the news traveled across the league, one team official claimed Weinberg broke “every rule in negotiations” in how he ultimately landed Sanders in Denver, per NFL.com.
Sanders has discussed at length his version of how negotiations went down in Kansas City and was not in the mood for this topic to rise up again six years later, right after the Bills’ AFC Divisional Round loss.
The 34-year-old retweeted the fan’s comment and wrote, “Kudos to all the present chiefs.. great game but in 2014 the chiefs gm tried to play me. Lol stop trying to twist the narrative. Also, put some respect on my name lol.. super bowl champ will forever be attached to my name.”
Sanders Is an Unrestricted Free Agent Heading into the 2022 NFL Season
Sanders, who helped the Broncos win Super Bowl 50 in 2016, and recorded a total of 404 receptions for 5,361 yards and 28 touchdowns during his six years in Denver, went on to play with the San Francisco 49ers and the New Orleans Saints before landing with the Bills in 2021.
In his nine-game appearances with the 49ers, Sanders caught 36 passes for 502 yards and three touchdowns, an important offensive weapon that helped the franchise clinch a Super Bowl berth in 2020. However, the Niners ultimately lost Super Bowl LIV to — yep, the Chiefs.
During Sanders’ following season with the Saints, he was the team’s second-leading receiver, as reported by SI, tallying 61 receptions for 726 yards and a touchdown.
The former third-round pick out of SMU alum signed a one-year contract with up to $6 million, per NFL analyst Albert Breer, which means Sanders, who turns 35 in March, is now an unrestricted free agent.
Sanders factored very little into the Bills playoff loss to the Chiefs on Sunday, he caught his lone target for a 16-yard gain. Overall on the season, however, he totaled 45 receptions for 678 yards and five touchdowns.
Will Sanders Remain in Buffalo in 2022?
It’s hard to say whether or not Sanders will remain in Buffalo next season, as the franchise’s depth at receiver is pretty stacked. The Bills may also choose to focus more on the development of breakout playoff star receiver Gabriel Davis, and move on from the 12-year veteran.
However, it wouldn’t come as a surprise if the Bills kept Sanders with another one-year contract. Based on Sanders’ comments while appearing on Colin Cowherd’s “The Herd” podcast last week, he’s a huge fan of playing alongside superstar quarterback Josh Allen:
I remember OTAs, and Brian Daboll, the offensive coordinator, he goes, ‘Emmanuel, I want you to come down and run a couple routes with this guy because he throws the ball different.’ I was like, ‘a football is a football. What is this guy talking about?’ So I was out there running routes, and I just hear the zip on the football, and I was like, ‘Oh, man, this is the real deal.’
Before losing to the Chiefs on Sunday, Sanders told Cowherd that “one of my greatest achievements, it would be incredible to bring a Super Bowl, the first Super Bowl, to this city.”