The transition from college to the pros is never easy for rookie quarterbacks, but in recent years we've seen more and more success from youngsters in their first year at the NFL level, particularly with first-round picks. And while expectations are fairly low for EJ Manuel, the only first-rounder taken in 2013 thinks he'll have a lot of success.
In fact, Manuel said recently that the Bills offense under new coach Doug Marrone is "easier to learn" than the offense he ran with Florida State.
“The funny thing is it's easier to learn than the offense I had at Florida State,” Manuel said on Sirius XM Radio via Pro Football Talk. “It's a true West Coast-type progression offense. That's really what I wanted when I was coming through the pre-draft process. I wanted something that I could just go in and say 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, check it down and run it. That's it, it's that simple. I love it."
You know. Just your casual five-progression read, followed by a check down and then a scramble. Easy as pie, because defenders won't be bearing down on him from every angle. Also, was Florida State's offense really complex? I kind of felt like it was set up to make things really easy on Manuel by giving him wide-open early reads.
Maybe not ...?
“The learning curve for me is a lot shorter simply because of what I had at Florida State," Manuel said. "[The Seminoles' offense is] more complex and a little bit harder to catch on and learn. This offense is very simple. I've done a great job with it.”
Well then I guess there's no need to compete for the Offensive Rookie of the Year. I had Manuel as my No. 9 impact offensive rookie for the 2013 NFL season and I do think if he's prepared to play right away that he could do some impressive things in Buffalo.
But I certainly don't have the same level of confidence in Manuel being ready as Manuel does. And I doubt I'm alone.