Tommy Kelly on E.J. Manuel

The New England Patriots are gearing up to face a rookie quarterback in E.J. Manuel, as the Buffalo Bills named Manuel the starter yesterday after seeing he is completely fit to play on Sunday. Manuel will have his work cut out for him against a Patriots team that traditionally eats rookie quarterbacks up for lunch, and his biggest concern should be a hobbled secondary and a defense that won’t make Manuel’s job any easier in trying to keep up with the Patriots high-powered offense.

Buffalo Bills quarterback E.J. Manuel (3) drops back to pass against the Minnesota Vikings during the second half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Vikings 20-16. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Bills quarterback E.J. Manuel (3) drops back to pass against the Minnesota Vikings during the second half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Vikings 20-16. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Throughout the week, players such as Jerod Mayo and coaches such as Bill Belichick have praised E.J. Manuel for his athleticism, rushing ability, and arm strength. His athletic ability and rushing bring a different dimension to the table, and I’ll bet that was one reason why the Bills felt comfortable taking him in the first round of the draft.

New England Patriots defensive tackle Tommy Kelly looks like an excellent signing to this point, because he seems incredibly dedicated and should be back to performing at an elite level. Playing next to star DT Vince Wilfork, Kelly should once again do an impeccable job putting pressure on the quarterback, and he showed in August that he still has the tools. Kelly is charged with trying to put Manuel to the ground by bringing some hot interior pressure, and he’ll hope to avoid being blocked by center Eric Wood, who excels as a pass protector.

Here’s what Kelly said about the Bills rookie signal-caller, “He runs a little bit but he tries to stay in that pocket. He tries to stay in that pocket and get that ball out of his hands. He’ll run when necessary. But to say he’s like Michael Vick, nah. But he’ll run, he’s definitely a threat.”

It’s interesting to see that Kelly views Manuel as somebody who prefers to stay in the pocket and will only run when he needs to, and that seems to be an accurate description. Not only do I want to see how the Patriots game plan against Manuel, but I also want to see how many designed runs the Bills have for Manuel on Sunday.



Topics: Buffalo Bills, E.J. Manuel, New England Patriots, Tommy Kelly

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  • chas territo

    Can not wait for this game! EJ As a rookie he will make mistakes, but the degree of bad is up in the air, he has shown the ability to overcome them. Pressure? He has the composure to bear it. He will deal with everything they throw at him. A win is a good possibility, but will it be? GO BILLS!!

    • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

      45-17 Pats…..end of story…..next.

      • chas territo

        Really?Ok, all you see is the Bills of the past, I get it. However, I do not see that score at all!At home, they play better than not, and will make it a close game and possibly win. They had them a bunch of times in the past to fail in the end> Couldn’t handle the pressure. This version is not that version. This version will surprise and win more games than last year, which btw will not be too difficult! I see a split between the Bills and the team you root for.Incredible, outlandish, dreaming, call it how you will, but that’s my belief!Either way it will be a close game!Dial it up, my friend! GO BILLS!!

        • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

          I’m glad you have a high amount of confidence in your team, and I really respect that sort of optimism. Best of luck to you guys, and let’s see if the Bills can surprise some people. I doubt it, but stranger things have happened. I mean, it was only a couple of years ago when the Bills handed us a real WTF loss haha.

          • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

            I’m pretty sure that was 10 years ago (31-0)…..and you know what happened that year.

          • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

            I was referring to the loss early in the 2011 season. Haha nice ring, but it’s going to be some time before that ends up being a reality. This should be an easy win for the Pats on Sunday, but let’s not completely count the Bills out of it (the last thing we need is a Shaughnessy-esque “0% chance” bit) haha. As for Canton, going there is right at the top of my bucket list, glad you had an awesome time there.

          • chas territo

            Well from one Italian to another,I like your fair mindedness. We both differ, but that’s cool.It is what it is and I respect your opinion because you did not attack my credibility. Now, while I am not fan Boston anything, WE can differ without resorting to child’s play
            Last week, my girlfriend and I visited the HOF in Canton, Ohio! great adventure. Spent 3 1/2 hours walking around the maze that is the hall! WE got tired before we saw it all!! Wow, what a place. Needed more time, what a drag! LOL. I saw a replay of last yrs SB, it was in a theater with IMAX type viewing. Joe, if you haven’t been, go, go, go! I designed a fantasy ring, shown below?? Fantasy living? GO BILLS!!

        • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

          Every year is a fresh start with high expectations, but some thing don’t change. The Bills will go through growing pains before they put together a competitive team on the field. The Bills have some very good players on both sides of the ball. Every good winning team has one thing in common, a QB who can lead and win on a regular basis. Manuel may become that QB the Bills are in great need of, but it will take time for him to develop a good chemistry with his players. There will be a lot of up’s and down’s. This game against the Pats will be a great learning experience for Manuel, unfortunately it will be one of those down moments. I stand by my prediction….45-17 Pats. I like your enthusiasm as a loyal Bills fan, “Chas”ing the dream.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      A win is a possibility, but it is highly unlikely. Manuel has plenty of confidence and gives off the vibe of a franchise quarterback, but there’s so much about the game that he still needs to get down. The Bills know that too, but they clearly want him to work through that during games.

      • chas territo

        Yeah it is unlikely,not neccessarily highly, tho. will be a good game as usual, but NE probably wins. The Bills have issues, but they will show up with a better defense than last years! Crybrady will feel pressure and get knocked on his ass, of which I can’t wait to enjoy!! Good luck to both on Sunday@ 1 o’clock at the Ralph!! GO BILLS!!

  • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

    “I also want to see how many designed runs the Bills have for Manuel on Sunday.”

    Not sure that would be the smartest thing to do. The Bills do not have a viable experienced backup at QB if Manuel went down with an injury. I think the Bills will want to see what he can do passing the ball rather than exposing him to the Pats punishing defense. He will run with the ball, but not anything designed…..just my thoughts.

    • http://www.musketfire.com/ Joe Soriano

      The Pats defense isn’t really that imposing, with the exception of Brandon Spikes who is a scary man to face. I’m interested in seeing if the Bills don’t design any runs, only run a couple (my guess), or if they try and make it a steady diet. I highly doubt it’s the last option with Manuel coming off of an injury.

      • http://sbpra.com/paulvsuffriti Paul V. Suffriti

        “The Pats defense isn’t really that imposing”

        You may change your mind while watching the Bills game as the defense, as a unit, aggressively attacks the Bills offensive line….this is not the same defense as last year, it will be much more imposing.

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