By Tim Graham
PITTSFORD -- Doug Marrone didn't set a deadline to name the Buffalo Bills' starting quarterback.
The rookie head coach did, however, provide the first significant glimpse into how he's approaching perhaps the most critical decision of his first season.
Marrone told reporters tonight at St. John Fisher College the Bills should have the quarterback depth chart settled shortly after their third preseason game.
"Again, you like to sit there as a coach and say you'd like that decision to just come up in front of you," Marrone said after his the opening practice of training camp. "Really, if you can get 10, 12 days prior to that first game, that's when you're going to get pressed for time and have to make a decision on a quarterback. That's when you're probably going to start preparing, 10 days out of the first game."
In other words, the Bills probably can't afford to string out the competion until right before the regular season begins.
The Bills will open Sept. 8 against the New England Patriots in Ralph Wilson Stadium.
Fifteen days earlier, the Bills will play their third preseason game. Ten days before the opener, the Bills will play their final exhibition.