NFL

Bills reach agreement to keep TE Chandler

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The Canadian Press
3/13/2014 6:40:56 PM
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ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Scott Chandler is returning to Buffalo, where he spent the past three seasons establishing himself as the Bills' top pass-catching tight end.

The Bills announced Thursday that they reached an agreement to re-sign Chandler. The move did not come as a surprise after the team extended the seventh-year player an offer before the NFL's free agency period opened on Tuesday.

Chandler is coming off a year in which he set career highs with 53 catches and 655 yards. In three-plus seasons in Buffalo, he has combined for 135 catches for 1,623 yards and 14 touchdowns in 49 games.

He scored six touchdowns in both 2011 and 2012, matching franchise single-season highs for tight ends. Chandler is the team's first tight end to break 500 yards receiving in consecutive seasons after finishing with 571 in 2012.

He also holds the Bills' record for tight ends with 32 consecutive games with a catch.

Chandler's return solidifies a spot that lacked experienced depth.

Lee Smith has been used more in blocking situations. In December, Buffalo signed Tony Moeaki, who has been sidelined by injuries for two of the past three seasons. Rookie seventh-round pick Chris Gragg played sparingly last season, and needs more time to develop.

Chandler played in college at Iowa and was selected by San Diego in the fourth round of the 2007 draft. He spent two seasons with the Chargers before splitting the next two years between the New York Giants and Dallas.

It wasn't until he was waived by the Cowboys and claimed by the Bills in December 2010 that Chandler had his first NFL catch.

Chandler credited his emergence in Buffalo to the experiences he had playing behind and learning from such NFL stars as Antonio Gates in San Diego and Jason Witten in Dallas.

Scott Chandler (Photo: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
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