NFL Past Preseason Hype Series: EJ Manuel 2013

(Photo: Joed Viera/

The Outkick NFL Past Preseason Hype Series will consist of separate posts that examine preseason hype generated by a specific player, coach, or team based on a single performance or a collection of performances during the NFL preseason (Check out previous postsJake Delhomme 2010 and 2008 Detroit Lions)

EJ Manuel faced an uphill battle the moment he was drafted.  When the Buffalo Bills picked the Florida State quarterback 16th overall in the 2013 draft, it was deemed a reach by the majority of pundits and experts and did not sit well with some of the fans. The Bills, who haven't had many competent quarterbacks since Jim Kelly retired in 1996, went out on a limb and Manuel had work to do to sway the public's opinion about him in his favor.

In the first game of the preseason, a 44-20 win over the Colts in Indianapolis, Manuel gave people  something to talk about.  He played the entire first half, going 16-of-21 with 107 yards and a touchdown.  On his final drive, during which most of the Bills starters were playing against the Colts backups, Manuel went 9-for-10 for 68 yards and a touchdown.  Here's some chatter from during and after the game:

Manuel continued to impress in the next preseason game against the Vikings, where he went 10-of-12 for 92 yards and a touchdown in three series during another Bills win. Some more chatter:

Unfortunately, Manuel injured his knee against Minnesota and had to sit out the rest of the preseason.  He finished the preseason on a high note, and won the starting job over Kevin Kolb, whom the Bills signed in the offseason. Manuel started the first five games of the 2013 season, leading the Bills to a 2-3 record, and showed some positive flashes, including a great fourth quarter comeback win over the Panthers in Week 2.  However, a knee injury in early October, sidelined him for five weeks.  In 2014, he was benched after the fourth game and never won his starting job back.  By 2016, he rarely played and was not re-signed.  Manuel is currently the backup quarterback for the Raiders.

Fred Segal is an attorney from West Palm Beach, FL. He operates the popular Freezing Cold Takes twitter account (@OldTakesExposed) which highlights, among other things, hilarious unprophetic and inaccurate takes and predictions. 

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