When the Buffalo Bills selected E.J. Manuel as the only quarterback selected in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft, it initially caught a lot of experts off guard when other quarterbacks such as Geno Smith and even Ryan Nassib were still on the board. After the draft was completed, the Bills seemed to have completely revamped their offense by adding notable wide receivers Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin and Da’Rick Rogers thus overhauling their paper-thin corps even from last season.
If Manuel is at the helm, he will likely have several targets to throw to, which could make him a favorite to win the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. What also helps him is that the last three seasons quarterbacks have won this prestigious award. While most people aren’t expecting 4,000 yards passing from a Bills quarterback, by taking Manuel, this could change things as he’s being compared to Carolina Panthers‘ quarterback, Cam Newton, due to his arm strength and the ability to take off and run the ball. Newton, in his rookie year, had 4,051 yards passing and 21 touchdown passes and 706 rushing yards and 14 rushing touchdowns.
Will Manuel win the Offensive Rookie of the Year? Time will tell but if he beats out Kevin Kolb for the starting quarterback job and the odds seem to be in his favor as this year’s draft was far more defensive heavy than offensive unlike the past two years which was seemingly full of quarterbacks and skill players. It seems like the Bills exploited this in their favor this year and they are heading in the right direction for the first time in over a decade it seems.