Getty Von Miller #40 of the Buffalo Bills looks on during the Bills mini camp on June 15, 2022, in Orchard Park, New York.
The biggest move the Buffalo Bills made this offseason was obtaining superstar outside linebacker Von Miller and signing the eight-time Pro Bowl player to a monster six-year, $120 million contract.
Miller’s signing was a big surprise since there were no previous reports linking him to Buffalo, and because Bills general manager Brandon Beane said during his postseason press conference in January that the team would not spend much in free agency since they were on the hook against the salary cap.
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Giving a 33-year-old edge rusher a six-year contract allows the franchise to spread out his salary and save space against the team’s salary cap. Because Miller will be 38 when his contract expires in 2027, it was widely assumed that he would finish his career in Buffalo, but would likely retire before his contract was up.
However, in an interview with The Buffalo News reporter Mark Gaughan, Miller said he plans to play out the entire contract.
“This is a six-year contract, so I expect to play the whole thing,” Miller said. “I’m trying to play the whole thing. Tom Brady has done it; Bruce Smith has done it. All guys I look up to when it comes to career longevity.
“So I take it one day at a time, and I’ll take what God gives me. My intention is to play the whole thing. I’m a real sicko when you get to know me. My mentality is different.”
Miller says he doesn’t feel 33 or look 33.
Edge rushers with highest career defensive grades since 2019
Despite his age, Miller continues to perform at an elite level. Last year, the two-time Super Bowl champion recorded 9.5 catches during the regular season, and in four playoff games with the Los Angeles Rams, he hauled in another four catches.
The former No. 2 overall selection in the 2011 NFL Draft has a total of 115.5 catches during his career so far, and has no plans to slow down. Miller sticks to a diligent workout routine to remain a highly productive edge rusher.
“I sit and talk to young guys, they ask me, ‘How do you do it,'” Miller said. “I’m like, ‘Bro, I honestly do everything you can do to keep your body fresh.’ Every time I leave here, the facility, the rest of my day is getting ready for the next day, whether it’s massages, nutrition, acupuncture, cold tub, cryo. It’s 2022 and we have so many different things that can help us recover. I’m doing them all.”
Miller also conveyed the importance of the mental aspect of the game, noting that he doesn’t look 33 years old, nor does he feel that old:
I think mentally, once you start feeling old, it’s done. I’ve been in the league for a long time and when guys start complaining, of course you’re going to have injuries and stuff, but when guys start complaining, it’s cold in here. Or we went back to practice today. Or just little things that I try to stay out of. I try to keep my mind positive.
When I’m running here with the guys, I try my best to show my teammates and gain their confidence that I’m 33 years old but I can run with you. I can run with anybody and I’m healthy and I take care of my body.
Miller wants to win a third Super Bowl
Miller addressed the media before the first day of the Bills’ mandatory minicamp on Tuesday, June 14, and shed light on what ultimately led him to leave the Rams. “We have all these AFC championships [banners] here, and not one Super Bowl,” Miller said of the training facility in Buffalo. “It’s an expectation of this franchise, this fan base, and that’s why I came here.”
“I could have stayed in Los Angeles and rode off into the sunset, running with Aaron Donald… But I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t happy where I was.”
“I still wanted more,” the future Hall of Famer continued, noting how he selfishly wants to win three Super Bowl championships with three different teams, a feat that has never been done in NFL history. “This organization wants a Super Bowl, so it’s win/win for both of us.”
Miller is also confident that he and the Bills can win Super Bowl LVII. “This is a special team. We’re right on the edge and I just want to be the last drop to rough these guys up, man. Bills Mafia has been waiting for it, Buffalo has been waiting for it and it’s going to be crazy if we can do it.”