Buffalo Bills Quarterback Watch: Who Is the Starter in 2010?

Kevin Roberts@BreakingKevinSenior Writer IFebruary 16, 2010

MIAMI - OCTOBER 04:  Quarterback Trent Edwards #5 of the Buffalo Bills reacts on the sidelines late in the game against the Miami Dolphins at Land Shark Stadium on October 4, 2009 in Miami, Florida. The Dolphins defeated the Bills 38-10.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images

Buffalo Bills beat writer Sal Maiorana reportedly "agrees" with the Buffalo News that Trent Edwards has a very good chance at NFL&hl=167676&id=4220" title="returning as the Bills' starting quarterback" target="_blank">returning as the Bills' starting quarterback in 2010.

Considering, at the moment, his main competition is Ryan Fitzpatrick and Brian Brohm, that seems to be a solid prediction.

However, there are many reasons why this story is far from over, and even if it is, there's still plenty of reason to question Edwards' ability to lead the Buffalo offense.

First, the Bills have a new head coach, Chan Gailey, who has experience with athletic quarterbacks, which Edwards clearly is not.

Edwards specializes in quick passes, relying on his accuracy and excellent understanding of the game. However, he's never thrown a great deep ball, struggles with some of the tougher throws, and hasn't proven to be a durable quarterback in his time in the league.

On top of that, he can be easily rattled, while showing only in rare glimpses an ability to take over a game.

To put it mildly, when Edwards isn't the bona fide starter over the likes of Fitzpatrick and Brohm, you know you've got trouble.

Gailey has already admitted the Bills have thought about bringing in a veteran, whether via trade or free agency, and there is always the possibility that Buffalo goes for a quarterback with the ninth selection in the 2010 NFL Draft.

Gailey's even gone as far as to say that the NFL is a "quarterback-driven league," realizing that being in a division with Tom Brady and two young, gifted signal callers with vast potential (Chad Henne, Mark Sanchez) would leave Buffalo in last place without a threat at the position.

So, outside of giving it "a go" with Edwards one more time to see if he has what it takes (he doesn't) or drafting a new quarterback (they might), there's the option of acquiring a veteran.

Here are some possibilities, as well as a few reaches.


The Possibilities

Donovan McNabb (Philadelphia Eagles)

McNabb has been heavily rumored (and predicted) by many to be serious trade bait, but it also seems that if that's the case, Philly's asking price is fairly high (and possibly too high).

Regardless, he's still athletic and mobile and has a big arm with solid poise in the pocket. In other words, he has what it takes to survive behind an inconsistent offensive line, and he has the talent to lift up Lee Evans and others around him.

With McNabb (and maybe Terrell Owens? Yikes), the Bills would immediately be playoff contenders, and with a rising defense (slowly, but surely), they could even go further.

It's still a slight reach, but with McNabb being the hot topic, especially as far as trades are concerned, it's an intriguing thought.


Michael Vick (Philadelphia Eagles)

Don't pay any attention to the man behind the curtain—that man being Andy Reid and the rest of the Eagles brass, and "the curtain" being the Philadelphia Eagles organization.

The truth is, Vick wants out, and Philly doesn't want to pay a backup over $5 million. He's trade bait or he gets cut. It's as simple as that.

Gailey spent his last four seasons at Georgia Tech coaching an athletic quarterback, and his past history suggests a trade for Vick could very well be in the cards.

Terrell Owens sticking around in Buffalo would only sweeten the deal. The only question is, can Vick truly be an effective passer anywhere but a dome?


Matt Hasselbeck (Seattle Seahawks)

Pete Carroll will undoubtedly be looking for a new quarterback in April's draft, as Hasselbeck is 33 and has battled injuries and consistency for the past two years.

It's time for Hasselbeck to move on, and if a team (Buffalo?) is willing to part with a second or third round pick, you can believe it will happen.

Seneca Wallace could hold down the fort until whoever Carroll drafts in the first round is ready to take over. One way or another, Hasselbeck's days in Seattle are numbered.


Troy Smith (Baltimore Ravens)

Smith may be on the small side, but he's shown in limited action that he has some potential for the position, with solid accuracy and good arm strength.

Gailey will fall in love with his mobility first, but Smith actually has a great head on his shoulders and could easily be an upgrade over what the Bills currently have.

Most importantly, he wants out of Baltimore, and he wants to start. Buffalo could be his golden ticket.


The Reaches

Marc Bulger (St. Louis Rams)

It was recently reported that Bulger has cleaned out his locker room, as it's been expected for some time now that he won't be back with the team.

Since they won't have to deal with a trade and will probably be able to bring him on for cheap, Bulger is a real possibility. He's only a "reach" because of how poorly he's played in the past three seasons and that he'd only be a mild upgrade (if at all) over the current quarterbacks.


Brady Quinn (Cleveland Browns)

Quinn is hyped up to be a grand bust, but with only 12 starts to his name on a team with an inconsistent offensive line and no weapons to speak of, he can hardly shoulder all the blame.

Like Edwards, Quinn has seen his career shortened by injuries and inconsistency, but in a new environment, it's not impossible to envision him thriving.


Kevin Kolb (Philadelphia Eagles)

This seems a bit unrealistic, as the public can't even be certain what Philadelphia truly thinks of Kolb (or their other quarterbacks), but he's a tough, skilled passer with youth on his side, and he presents a lot more talent and potential that Edwards does.

Kolb is in high demand, so it will depend on how much Gailey and co. are willing to give up to give the most important position a major upgrade.


Derek Anderson (Cleveland Browns)

Anderson could be the farthest fetch of all the options, because despite having a cannon arm and big-play ability, he has looked the worst in recent action.

He's got better size and potential than teammate Brady Quinn, but the control, accuracy, and mobility just aren't there. He's a stopgap talent with the ability to change a game but without the consistency to lead Buffalo to a strong finish.

He's an option, but he won't be what Gailey is looking for.


Other options: Kyle Orton, Tyler Thigpen, Chad Pennington, Chris Redman


While there's no telling what Buffalo, Philadelphia, Cleveland, and so many other teams will do before free agency begins in March, there's always time to speculate.

Regardless of which rumor you care to believe, hope for, or spread, there's a decent chance that one of these quarterbacks listed, and not the inconsistent Edwards, is starting for the Buffalo Bills in 2010.

Our money is on Vick coming to Buffalo, but until March rolls around, that's just speculation.

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