Ryan Fitzpatrick: The Next Jim Kelly or Frank Reich?

Michael McMastersCorrespondent IDecember 1, 2010

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 28:  Ryan Fitzpatrick #14  of the Buffalo Bills readies to throw against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Ralph Wilson Stadium on November 28, 2010 in Orchard Park, New York. Pittsburgh won 19-16 in overtime.  (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

Ryan Fitzpatrick is having a magical year for the Buffalo Bills, so magical that local media heads came up with a song just for him.

Yes, the Buffalo Bills are 2-9 and yes, they haven't beaten a good team, but focus on Fitz's numbers. He's 192-of-330 for 2,226 yards and 19 TDs to 10 INTs through nine games.

Sure, he has only completed a shade below 59 percent of this passes, but what he does works.

With Fitz at the helm, Buffalo has been competitive. The players around him believe in him—especially the young guys—and that's important for a team that consists of a lot of players trying to find their way.

You have to remember that the Bills are a relatively young team that plays in the toughest division in the NFL.

Another important factor Bills fans should consider is that Jim Kelly, in his first year as the starter of the Buffalo Bills, went 2-14. Will that happen to Ryan Fitzpatrick? They have a tough schedule down the stretch. They play only two more teams with losing records: Minnesota and Cleveland.

Another factor is Fitzpatrick also owns the second largest comeback in Bills recent history. He took the Bills from down 31-14 at the half to a 49-31 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, scoring 35 unanswered points to finish the game in spectacular fashion. Frank Reich, anyone?

While I do expect Fitzpatrick to play lights out for the remainder of the season, I don't expect more than two more wins. That's not to say it's his fault; Buffalo just can't generate a consistent pass rush. They lost their sack man in Aaron Schobel. That's what Buffalo is missing and that's their number one need heading into the offseason, not a QB.

Bills fans clamoring for Andrew Luck will be severely disappointed. Buffalo has played its way out of that sweepstakes. The Carolina Panthers are a lock to hold the first pick in the draft, and that's where Luck is going first overall, so forget it.

In all honesty, the Bills have a blend of the two most memorable QBs that played during the Bills' heyday. Embrace the guy you have.

Ryan Fitzpatrick is the best you can do, and honestly that's not a bad thing. You say you need a little luck, well, the luck of the Irish isn't that bad.