Draft Scout Snapshot: A closer look at the Bills' picks: Round 1/16 -- EJ Manuel, QB, 6-4, 237, Florida State...No team studied quarterback prospects as hard or thoroughly as Buffalo in what was considered a weak class. But in making Manuel their starter of the future, perhaps this season if he can beat out veterans Kevin Kolb and Tarvaris Jackson, the Bills get the biggest, fastest (4.55) and one of the smartest quarterbacks available. Manuel will need work, like developing the ability to read the entire field and make his progressions. But his size and versatility as a runner and passer gives new coach Doug Marrone a major building block. - The Sports Xchange
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Draft Scout EJ Manuel News
04/28/13 - A closer look at the Bills' picks: Round 1/16 -- EJ Manuel, QB, 6-4, 237, Florida State...No team studied quarterback prospects as hard or thoroughly as Buffalo in what was considered a weak class. But in making Manuel their starter of the future, perhaps this season if he can beat out veterans Kevin Kolb and Tarvaris Jackson, the Bills get the biggest, fastest (4.55) and one of the smartest quarterbacks available. Manuel will need work, like developing the ability to read the entire field and make his progressions. But his size and versatility as a runner and passer gives new coach Doug Marrone a major building block. - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - QUOTE TO NOTE: "Yes, it is significant when you take a quarterback. Kevin Kolb and Tarvaris Jackson have done a very good job while we have been here and EJ is going to have to come in (and earn a job) and he knows that. You have to learn the scheme and earn the trust of your players. I know I am being very repetitive, but it is the truth and that is how you have to do it. You put a quarterback out there on the field and my philosophy has always been that everyone has to believe, when I talk about the team, that that player can win games for you." - Coach Doug Marrone on starting first-round pick EJ Manuel at quarterback only if he proves he gives the team the best chance to win. - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - Quarterback EJ Manuel has connections to two Buffalo Bills Pro Football Hall of Famers, Jim Kelly and Bruce Smith. Manuel met Kelly when Florida State was recruiting Kelly's nephew, Chad, and Kelly slipped him his cell-phone number. Manuel met Smith when he was a young boy growing up in Virginia Beach, Va., and called him like a "godfather to me." "Bruce has been very pivotal in my process going from high school to college and now from college to the pros," Manuel said.
Bills general manager Buddy Nix likes that Manuel can run the read option made hip last season by players like Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson. But that's not why Manuel was drafted with the No. 16 pick, he said. "I do not think that the NFL is going to get to be an option league," Nix said. "I think this thing is going to be something you use some, but I do like the idea that he could do it if you wanted to. If you can get a guy that can take you either way it is a good thing." - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - Kelly, Losman ... where will EJ Manuel fit for Bills? ... In the end, general manager Buddy Nix and coach Doug Marrone made no hesitation in selecting Florida State's EJ Manuel with the No. 16 overall pick, just the third quarterback drafted in the first round in the franchise's 55 years. The others were Jim Kelly (1983) and J.P. Losman (2004). The quarterback-starved Bills could've selected West Virginia's Geno Smith, the highest rated passer on most everyone's scouting report. They could've drafted Ryan Nassib, the fast-rising Syracuse quarterback who just happened to play four seasons for Marrone with the Orange. USC's Matt Barkley, Arkansas' Tyler Wilson ... the list went on and on.
The Bills, who haven't made the playoffs in 13 seasons, released three-year starter Ryan Fitzpatrick during the off-season and made no secret they were targeting a quarterback of the future, perhaps immediately if Manuel can beat out veterans Kevin Kolb and Tavaris Jackson in training camp. No team spent more time researching the quarterbacks available in this draft. "As you know, we did a lot of work on these guys and we felt we knew him as well as you could from a distance," Nix said. "This guy, to us, has the upside to be whatever you want him to be. They all had good qualities but this is a guy who can do both (run and pass). It's up to Coach Marrone and his staff how they use him, but this guy can do both ... and he's a winner." - The Sports Xchange
04/28/13 - In Manuel, the Bills get the biggest (6-5, 237) and fastest (4.55 forty dash) quarterback in the draft. His arm is plenty strong for Buffalo's weather, team scouts said, but deep accuracy will need to be worked on. A two-year starter at Florida State where he posted a 25-6 record as a starter, Manuel completed 68 percent of his throws for 3,397 yards, 23 touchdowns, 10 interceptions and a 156.1 rating as a senior. For his career, he threw for 7,741 yards and 47 scores.
A Marrone-Nassib reunion in Buffalo, where Nassib's college offensive coordinator (Nate Hackett) is also now employed, was long talked about in the media but Marrone said he wasn't torn about the selection of Manuel. "I wouldn't use the word 'conflicted,' '' Marrone said. "At the end of the day, there were a lot of good quarterbacks in the draft and we took the one that we felt best fits us here in Buffalo." - The Sports Xchange