One is coming.
The other one may be going.
At first glance, there are a great many similarities between former Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston and former Florida State quarterback E.J. Manuel. Both are strong-armed, both won a lot and both were No. 1 draft picks.
But while Winston’s time is just beginning in Tampa Bay, there are already murmurings that Manuel’s era may be closing with the Buffalo Bills.
And, gee, wasn’t that fast?
For Winston, the praise continues to stack up. About his intelligence. About his leadership. About his work ethic.
Maybe they said that once about Manuel. Who can remember?
In Buffalo, offensive coordinator Greg Roman said that rumors of Manuel’s departure “couldn’t be further from the truth.” But do quarterbacks on solid ground even have such rumors swirling about them? Doesn’t even the speculation give some clues?
It was only two years ago when the Bills made Manuel their No. 1 draft pick. A radio report (WKBW) said this week that the Bills would evluate Manuel to see not only if he will be their starting quarterback, but if he will make the team’s roster at all.
Even with a change of coaches (from Doug Marrone to Rex Ryan), the Bills would be guilty of an extremely quick trigger with Manuel, who has started only 14 games, and won only six, in his two seasons. Manuel has completed only 58.6 percent of his passes, and he has 12 interceptions in those 14 starts.
But the Bills have brought in Matt Cassel, the favorite to start the season. That leaves Manuel on their bench. Or perhaps, on someone else’s.