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Fitz, Simms & the draft

Former NFL great Phil Simms had some interesting comments on Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick in a Buffalo News story today. In case you missed it:

“He’s made a few throws that were questionable as far as the decision-making," Simms said. “But when you throw a quick passing game, it’s harder to make the greatest decisions because it’s faster and there’s more people around the ball. So it’s kinda the opposite of what people think. To me, this is just me, your chances of mistakes go up the faster you throw the ball. Everybody thinks, ‘Oh, we’ll be safe and throw it quick.’ There’s hands you have to deal with, throwing lanes, you’re trying to make the decisions so quick. Do you see it perfectly? I’ll tell you the other thing. The receiver has to do the littlest things completely right. So that’s gonna affect it. The whole structure of the team is going to affect this type of offense they’re running. The fact they’re playing from behind – all those things."

Simms does not think Fitzpatrick’s throwing mechanics or velocity were a problem the second half of the season. “I don’t see a great difference in him when I watch him now than when I watched him six to eight weeks ago when they were the hottest thing in the NFL," Simms said before the win over Denver. “Physically I think he’s throwing the ball well. I said it when I did the game down in Dallas, Every time I watch him play, I think he’s a little better physically to me – just throwing the ball."

Ultimately, whether you loved the Fitzpatrick contract extension or not, the Bills were going with Fitzpatrick as their quarterback for next season no matter how the season played out.

With the 10th pick in the NFL Draft, the Bills have at least three teams - and maybe four - in dire need of a quarterback picking ahead of them. The number might even be five if there were that many elite QBs available. The reality is there are two top 10 QBs available - Stanford's Andrew Luck and Baylor's Robert Griffin III. Oklahoma's Landry Jones might be a first-rounder but he's not a top 10 guy.

Indianapolis (picking No. 1), Washington (No. 6) and Miami (No. 8 or 9) surely need a QB. Cleveland (No. 4) probably needs a QB. Jacksonville (No. 7) needs one too, from this perspective, but surely will stick with Blaine Gabbert since its GM is staying put.

It can't be overstated: The decision by Southern Cal's Matt Barkley to return to school was a killer for NFL teams this year. He clearly would have been the No. 2 QB behind Luck. He's way more NFL ready than Griffin.

---Mark Gaughan




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