After quite possibly the most embarrassing and frustrating loss I’ve ever seen as a lifetime Bills fan, Tyrod Taylor went a measly 9/18 for 56 yards and a pick, finishing the day with a 33.6 QBR. In the 47-10 home loss, Taylor was benched in the 4th quarter for rookie QB Nathan Peterman.
Being a Bills fan, you know this, especially about quarterbacks recently: we move on fast and we’re quick to jump onto the guy that has one good game (i.e Kyle Orton and Ryan Fitzpatrick). Tyrod Taylor has had a pretty consistent Bills career, never hurting the team but at the same time not providing the spark a starting quarterback in this league needs to in order to be great. So, when Peterman came in, I knew what was to follow if he had a good few drives. The Saints sat back in prevent defense, and Peterman was able to execute fairly easily, finishing the game a solid 7/10 for 79 yards and even threw his first career touchdown to Nick O’Leary. Two big completions came to new addition Kelvin Benjamin, who had been silent since the first drive of the game. Peterman was impressive, but it was against a defense that wasn’t trying too hard, up by over 30 points.
As expected, the whispers for Peterman became shouts. Following the loss, Head Coach Sean McDermott said that Tyrod Taylor would remain the starter. However, he shockingly and quickly changed his mind, announcing that Peterman would be getting the start Sunday in San Diego. The Bills sit at 5-4 and still control the 2nd Wild Card in a weak bottom half of the AFC. As crazy at it sounds, they only trail the first place Patriots by 2 games. The schedule only gets harder for Buffalo, traveling to San Diego this week followed by another tough road game against the Chiefs. In addition, the Bills still have to play the Patriots and Dolphins twice. Peterman will have his work cut out for him.
Here’s my final take on the Bills decision to start Peterman over Taylor: The Bills are showing that they aren’t content with the mediocrity and average quarterback play often seen from Tyrod Taylor. However, the problem is if Peterman doesn’t have a good start, the quarterback position becomes a revolving door, something a team in the playoff hunt does not want, especially at the most important position in football. Peterman has the build and arm to be an NFL quarterback, and the Bills did need to audition him to see if they would take another quarterback in next year’s draft. The Bills, however, don’t have time for patience when the fan base and team is so starved for a playoff berth. This week will be a true test, as the elusiveness and speed of Tyrod Taylor will be missed against the stacked Chargers defensive line led by Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram, not to mention the fact the Bills offensive line has seemed absent the past two weeks. Peterman will also need help from the Bills defense, which looked absolutely horrendous last week against New Orleans. Look for Peterman to find veterans Charles Clay and Jordan Matthews early and often, and Kelvin Benjamin to be a big factor. One thing is for sure: these next few weeks sure will be interesting for the Buffalo Bills and their fan base, including possibly seeing the future of the franchise.
(Pic creds: Washington Post)