With less than two weeks until they kick off their season opener against the New England Patriots, the quarterback position has become a bigger question than it’s ever been. That’s not to say that the Bills ever had it figured out. It just got a whole lot worse and on Sunday it hit rock bottom. Since the only healthy QB left on the roster was undrafted free agent Jeff Tuel, the Bills were forced to sign Matt Leinart and trade for some guy named Thad Lewis.
Let that soak in for a minute.
Matt Leinart and Thad Lewis.
Listen, I’m sure each QB is completely competent at running an offense, but trying to learn an NFL-sized playbook and then executing it in two weeks is a whole other ball game.
It’s not fair to heap the blame on general manager Doug Whaley, either. He’s only been in the building for a little over three months.
In April, Kevin Kolb, a quarterback with multiple injury concerns, was inked to a two-year deal worth $13 million. Then during the NFL Draft, Buffalo was the first to select a quarterback (E.J. Manuel) in an unproven class.
Since then, both have been sidelined with injuries. Manuel had minor knee surgery last week. Kolb is dealing with concussion-like symptoms, which some reports have surfaced that the organization believes could be career-threatening.
It’s ugly. It’s a mess. And it might get worse before it gets better. But if Manuel can recover at an accelerated rate and show glimpses of the prized player he’s thought to be, then all of the concerns will go away. But it’s unlikely. Why would the Bills really want to rush its future QB back from an injury if he’s not ready? They wouldn’t and they won’t.
Let’s take a look at the QB transactions the Bills have made this offseason via BuffaloBills.com:
Signed QB Aaron Corp – 2/14 Re-signed QB Tarvaris Jackson – 2/15 Released QB Ryan Fitzpatrick – 3/12 Signed QB Kevin Kolb – 4/8 Selected QB E.J. Manuel – 4/25 Released QB Aaron Corp – 4/29 Signed QB Jeff Tuel – 4/29 Released QB Tarvaris Jackson – 6/10 Signed QB Matt Leinart –8/25 Traded for QB Thaddeus Lewis – 8/25