The quarterback situation is a mess in Western New York, yet EJ Manuel continues to fall behind Matt Cassel and Tyrod Taylor in the race to be named the starter for the Buffalo Bills.
Sal Capaccio of WGR 550 didn’t exactly have flattering words for the third-year quarterback. Capaccio said:
“EJ Manuel just can’t get off the mat right now. He’s appearing to fall further and further behind in this competition, mostly because of (again) his inaccuracies. …
“EJ has a preseason game and then two days of practicing against the Cleveland Browns before another game to try and gain ground. But it looks like he’ll really have to do something special in those settings to have a legitimate shot to stay in it.”
A first-round pick in 2013, Manuel was expected to change the fortunes of a Buffalo team that hasn’t showcased a franchise quarterback in more than a decade.
However, the Florida State product appeared in five games last season before getting benched, ending his sophomore campaign with a dismal average of 167.6 passing yards per outing. Kyle Orton—who replaced Manuel in 2014—retired after the season, though, leaving the Bills in the vaunted “quarterback purgatory.”
Cassel isn’t a special player by any means, while Taylor has thrown just 35 passes during his four-year NFL career. Nevertheless, barring an unexpected meteoric rise during the preseason, both quarterbacks appear to be a better choice than Manuel.
If Manuel indeed falls short in the already-dreary competition, he’s likely out of opportunities to be a starter in the league.