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Ryan Fitzpatrick not keen on possibility of being a backup

By Jay Skurski

Ryan Fitzpatrick finished the 2012 season 13th in the NFL in touchdown passes, 16th in completions, and 17th in passer rating.

He is, by those statistical measures, a middle-of-the-road starting quarterback in the NFL. That explains why, when asked today whether he'd consider returning to Buffalo as a backup to a new, young quarterback, Fitzpatrick was less than enthusiastic about the proposition.

"I would hate to speculate on any of that. For me personally, I think I want to play," he said. "That's just who I am. I think I'm a starter in this league and want to play. I'd hate to play the 'what if' game right now, I guess."

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Fitzpatrick also chose not to address a question about whether he'd be open to restructuring his contract.

"I'm not going to do the hypothetical thing," he said.

Asked whether he had a sense of what his future would be, he said: "Not any more than you guys [the media] do, I guess. I mean I think everything's up in the air right now."

Fitzpatrick spoke less than an hour before the Bills made the firing of coach Chan Gailey official. One of the final questions posed to the quarterback during his news conference was about his relationship with Gailey.

"Chan means a lot to me as a person and as a coach. Before he took over here, I was kind of the lost journeyman, bouncing around from team to team," Fitzpatrick said. "He was the guy that gave me my first real shot, the guy that showed a lot of confidence in me and has stood by my side for the last few years. He means a lot to me as a coach and as a person and he’s somebody I’ll always respect." 

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About Press Coverage

Tim Graham

Tim Graham

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

@ByTimGraham | [email protected]


Mark Gaughan

Mark Gaughan

Buffalo native Mark Gaughan started working at The News in 1980 and has been covering the Bills exclusively since 1992. He is a former president of the Pro Football Writers of America, and he is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection committee.

@gggaughan | [email protected]


Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida. He writes a weekly Fantasy column in addition to his beat writing duties.

@JaySkurski | [email protected]

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