There was a time last season when the Bills were 5-2 and Fred Jackson was a legitimate MVP candidate. He got hurt and only played 10 games, but still managed 934 yards and 6 touchdowns on 170 carries (5.5 YPC) with 39 catches for another 442 yards. Despite missing 6 games, he was still ProFootballFocus’ highest rated back last season and if you count the Miami game where he got hurt and had just 7 carries, the Bills were 5-4 with him healthy and 1-6 without him last year.
He was heading into a contract year in 2012. This extension is for his age 32-33 seasons, which is normally an irresponsible signing because of how infrequently even Hall of Fame running backs continue to run well into their 30s. However, Jackson is still at 817 career carries after spending most of his career working his way up the depth chart as an undrafted free agent out of Division-III Coe College. This deal is only for 8 million over 2 years anyway (with more available through incentives) so this is a smart move for the Bills to extend one of their best players.