Vince Young Is the Buffalo Bills' Answer at Backup Quarterback

Erik Frenz@ErikFrenzSenior Writer IMay 11, 2012

In signing former No. 3 overall pick Vince Young to a one-year deal on Friday, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, the Buffalo Bills may have solidified their status as the 2012 Dream Team (just don't tell Vince).

Some people, myself included, were surprised that the Bills didn't select a quarterback in the draft. The feeling was that the Bills might like to potentially groom a replacement for Ryan Fitzpatrick while giving themselves a backup option.

2011 was a bad year for Young; after the Dream Team comments and the Eagles' nightmarish start to the season, Young was called upon to fill in for three games for an injured Michael Vick. Although Young flashed solid play at times, he threw four interceptions as the Eagles ultimately went 1-2 on his watch.

So it's no surprise that general manager Buddy Nix came right out about Young's role as a backup.

We think adding Vince to our roster will create more competition for the backup quarterback position. He brings with him some unique physical abilities that most are aware of and that will make the competition interesting. It's all about improving our team.

If Young is forced into the mix, he brings a lot of the same things to the table as Fitzpatrick: an unorthodox delivery, a penchant for scrambling, a solid arm and a fearless tendency toward risk-taking. 

Interestingly enough, their career numbers are very similar, with Fitzpatrick holding a career passer rating of 75 while Young's sits at 74.4. They both also have a TD/INT ratio of nearly 1:1; Fitzpatrick has 68 touchdowns and 65 interceptions while Young has thrown 46 touchdowns and 51 picks.

But while all that might give them a bit of confidence in their fallback option, the Bills' best-case scenario is that Young never sees the field. Ideally, Fitzpatrick will live up to his contract, and stay healthy.

He laid the foundation for that contract with a hot start that had the Bills primed for a playoff spot with a 5-2 record, but that foundation cracked when his ribs did, and he played poorly as the Bills went 1-8 down the stretch.

But when it comes to injuries, you can never have too many viable backup options at quarterback; just look at the Houston Texans, who lost their first two quarterbacks to injury (and still had a legitimate shot in the playoffs).

Throughout his career, though, Fitzpatrick has yet to put together a solid season from start to finish, whether healthy or not. 

The Bills were wise to cover their bases because quite simply, the NFL season isn't filled with too many best-case scenarios.