Rex Ryan Says Buffalo Bills Quarterback Competition is Open

Rex Ryan Says Buffalo Bills Quarterback Competition is Open

Even though the Buffalo Bills are just over four months away from the start of training camp in July, head coach Rex Ryan has already made it clear that the quarterback position will be earned this season.

In an appearance on WGR Sportsradio 550, Ryan shared his feelings on the quarterback position and explained that the job will be an open competition this July.

“It’s going to be open. It’s a competition and whoever earns the job will be the guy that’s out there,” said Ryan. “We have some talented guys and we’ll see what happens. You bring in a veteran like Matt Cassel. He’s done some pretty good things in this league and has that veteran presence about him. Then with EJ [Manuel] back there, just going into his third year, I really believe he will improve fundamentally with (quarterbacks coach) David Lee. I love the fact that he’s a gym rat and he’s smart. With (offensive coordinator) Greg Roman and our offence being multiple, we’ll be able to get out of bad plays and get ourselves into good plays. Mentally, I think all four of our quarterbacks should be able to handle that.”

“With [Tyrod] Taylor that’s going to be a young man, he’s probably the fastest quarterback in the league. He’s explosive running the zone read, and we’ll see where he’s at. Then Tuel. We’ve got guys there to work with, and I think that’s the important thing. There will be competition, but the person is going to have to earn the job and it hasn’t been handed to somebody.”

Once the Bills traded for Cassel this offseason, many suspected that he would automatically become the team’s starting quarterback. But Ryan clearly has a different idea. 

With four quarterbacks on the roster, the Bills coaching staff will have to think of creative ways to get each player reps in practice. However, according to Ryan, the team intends to do just that as he plans on having two offensive units and two defensive units practicing against one another on two different fields at St. John Fisher College.

“When we get to training camp, we’re actually going to do a lot of things on two fields,” Ryan said. “It won’t just be the offence going and the defence going, we’re going to be working on two fields. That’s how you develop young quarterbacks. We’re blessed to have some guys that have developed young quarterbacks. Greg Roman, Chris Palmer, this is how they did it. You switch whoever is running with the two’s on one field and then with the one’s [on another], and that’s how you get better.”

“We have some young quarterbacks and we want to makes sure that everybody gets the right amount of reps. We’ll have the exact same practice that we have on field one as field two so everybody gets the same reps. You’ll just basically double them.”

The new practice approach will require Ryan and his coaches to spread across two fields, but in the early part of camp the extra reps should benefit everyone. Bills’ fans can only hope that the new practice approach will help one of the four quarterbacks develop into a true starter.