2013 NFL Draft: Buffalo Bills Draft E.J. Manuel

By Mike Atkinson
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Former West Virginia Mountaineers quarterback Geno Smith waited with the anticipation of hearing his name called early last night at the 2013 NFL Draft.

He waited, he waited and he waited some more. He waited and saw offensive tackles and lineman selected one after another. He waited and saw his own teammate, Tavon Austin, who he threw a number of touchdown passes to in 2012, get selected number eight overall to the St. Louis Rams.

What had to be the straw that broke his back however, surely must have been seeing Florida State Seminoles’ quarterback from 2012, E.J. Manuel, get taken by the Buffalo Bills with the 16th pick.

This is obviously a controversial pick. If it works out for the Bills, they’ll look like geniuses. If it doesn’t work out for them, they’ll look like, frankly, the Bills.

There has been some argument as to who the best quarterback in this draft was, and I think everyone is in agreement that it was not Manuel. Just to compare Manuel to Smith for a second, Manuel threw 47 touchdowns in his career at Florida State. Smith threw for 42 touchdowns in 2012 alone.

What’s even more shocking about this pick, is that Doug Marrone, head coach of the Bills, could have picked his old quarterback at the Syracuse OrangeRyan Nassib.

He passed on his own product to pick a quarterback that wasn’t even projected to go anywhere near the first round.

The only reason that could even remotely justify the decision to take a quarterback other than Geno Smith with that pick is the fact that Marrone, at Syracuse was 3-0 against Smith and the Mountaineers.

Perhaps Marrone thought he wasn’t anything special since he hadn’t had any trouble with him. That’s flawed logic however, because it takes a team effort to win or lose a game. Smith did most of his damage in college with a weak team around him.

Regardless, it will be interesting to see where Smith ends up, as round two of the draft starts tonight.

Mike is a Big 12 Football writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MikeAtkinsonRS, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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