The Buffalo Bills have a three-way quarterback competition involving EJ Manuel, Matt Cassel and Tyrod Taylor. In short, they’re far from an ideal spot when it comes to the QB position.
Doug Whaley, the team’s general manager, spoke to WGR 550 on Wednesday, and made it clear to everyone that the Bills are in something of a bind with the group of guys they have now, and it’s going to be difficult finding a long term solution from the outside because of the Bills’ ability and the trends of the market when it comes to the best quarterbacks. There’s no tanking in the NFL (not to the degree we see in the NBA), and finding that special guy in the draft without a high pick doesn’t always happen.
We’re good enough that we’re not going to have the first or second overall pick. We hope we’re not in that position. Hopefully now we’re drafting in the teens and the 20s and the 30s. So you’re not going to get those college guys that are coming out. Franchise quarterbacks hit the free-agent market? Name one. Unless they have an injury. So it’s going to be an onus on our scouting staff to find a guy in the lower first round, second or third round. We accept that challenge. It’s where we are, and it’s been good that we have enough talent around that we’re in that situation, but it’s not an easy answer. There isn’t one.
EJ Manuel was the 16th overall pick by the Bills in 2013. He has a decent Win-Loss record, but this isn’t baseball starting pitching, and in terms of ability, the Bills haven’t been exactly satisfied with what he’s shown them. From what we’ve been hearing from training camp and the previous practices, Manuel seems to be in the lead to take the starting spot again this season.
If last year was his first year, I know he’s further along this year when he was last year, let’s say that, from that experience. But that was the original plan. Have him sit behind Kevin Kolb, learn one or two years and then see what he can do. This year, we want to see a step. Will it be the ultimate step? That’s up to him. But I definitely see that he has gone through some trials and tribulations and he’s learned from them. The one thing I know about him is if he does make it, it’s because of his work ethic, and if he doesn’t make it, it won’t be because of his want-to and his work ethic.
The Bills haven’t given up. They do hope Manuel develops into the kind of guy they can sign for years to come and not have to worry about the position. But when looking at it from a realistic point of view, it’s going to be difficult upgrading the position without some luck, or the team declining and getting so bad it gets those high picks again.