by Bob Gaughan, Buffalo Sports Page
With the Buffalo Bills making the playoffs, the Bills QB dilemma has taken an unexpected turn and in many ways, has gotten more interesting. Tyrod Taylor will lead the Bills into their first playoff game in 17 years against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. It’s been conventional wisdom that Tyrod will not be back next year. After he was replaced for the Chargers game the writing has been on the wall. So what’s changed since the Bills made the playoffs?
First, the standard is Tyrod and making the playoffs. If you’re going to dump Tyrod you need to bring in someone significantly better than him and not a guy that’s going have you go 6-10. At what point does Tyrod keep his job? If the Bills beat Jacksonville on Sunday and the Bills make the second round of the playoffs, does Tyrod keep his job? The Bills have exceeded expectations this year, even though the offense hasn’t been as productive as it was the first two years with Taylor as QB.
Sinking Draft Picks
The problem with the Bills winning is that their draft picks get lower and lower. When this happens your chance of moving up in the draft becomes lower and lower. Currently looking at the top 10 of the draft: Cleveland and the Giants pick first and second. You would think the top two QB’s go off the board then. Two teams desperate for a QB in the Broncos and Jets go five and six. Indianapolis and Cleveland pick three and four. Those two teams are primed trade-up candidates. You would think that if the Colts and Browns want to trade out of those spots they are unlikely to want to drop down to the Bills picks in the mid 20’s. There are two QB’s in the draft better than Tyrod: Josh Rosen and Sam Darnold. The Browns and Giants will take these two guys. The next two guys are Baker Mayfield and Josh Allen. Did you watch the Rose Bowl? If so, do you think Baker Mayfield can make more plays from a crowded pocket into tight windows than Tyrod? I don’t. Mayfield in my eyes is very similar in that respect to Tyrod. Josh Allen has all the tools a team would want but why are scouts scared to death because of him. BSP’s Greg Gabriel is not a fan of Allen. Many people aren’t a fan because of his lack of accuracy and poor decision making. In order for the Bills to get one of the top four QB’s in the draft they would need to get up to 6th, and by making the playoffs they may not have the ammunition to move up anymore.
Free Agency An Option?
What about free agency? One QB that could be had for a big price is Kirk Cousins. Cousins hasn’t had the year he had last year with Sean McVay as his coordinator. But he hasn’t been that bad either. The problem with Cousins is that he is going to cost a team that wants him around 30 million a year. Is he worth that much money? Will the Bills be willing to pay that much money? The next best quarterback maybe available for trade would be Alex Smith. Is Alex Smith better than Tyrod?
The good news is that there is time for these decisions to be made. The other bit of good news is that most Bills fans believe they have the better QB on the field Sunday. Blake Bortles has thrown 64 interceptions in his career. By comparison Tyrod’s career numbers, when combining his rushing and passing TD’s, are 65 touchdowns and 14 interceptions.
Still The Best Option?
In conclusion, the Bills are in the playoffs and they have the better QB on Sunday. The Bills moving up in the draft becomes harder and harder with each Bills and Chiefs win.
There’s one free agent QB that is much better than Tyrod and he’s way over-priced. So there’s a chance that conventional wisdom is wrong and the Tyrod could be back next year as the Bills QB.