Posted 03 May 2013 - 07:30 AM
It IS NEW, really. At least - there's a difference between EJ Manuel and Mario Williams. We had to overpay to get Mario to come here - and he did so with a smile, and polite words - but any observer could tell, Buffalo was not the place he'd of preferred going to, it was the place that paid him the most. We get that a lot with F.A.'s - the question is always asked, "why did you decide to come to Buffalo?" - and, we the listener always know, it's because of the money! Free Agents don't want to come to Buffalo otherwise.
Well, here is a kid who gets drafted in the 1st round, the 1st QB taken - he's a big, athletic kid, smart, fashionable, cool - you can tell he's going to be in commercials, hanging out with stars, a real NFL personality - and he walks on stage with a huge grin like it was the coolest moment in the world. The difference between EJ Manuel and most everyone else that has come to Buffalo of late - if it's been drafted players, they are "just happy to get a chance", but they don't really know much of anything about Buffalo, other than it's sucked for the last decade plus. Same with FA's - they don't want to be here, but they're getting the most money to do so; they don't want to be here because the team has been a black hole for over a decade. Now, the difference with EJ is that the Bills EJ has in mind when he walks on that stage are the Bills of his God Father - Bruce Smith - the Bills that went to 4 straight Super Bowls.
EJ Manuel has a different view of the Bills. He sees it as a cool place to come play, with young, innovative coaching; a team that is going to be FUN to play for, and a team that is going to shock some people. He's not carrying all that UNSPOKEN hesitation, or baggage, with him that is associated with Buffalo. A player like that - a high profile WINNING QB (if he becomes a good player and we start winning) will draw players to Buffalo. Thats the cool thing - the Bills have a chance to redefine themselves here, and become a young, NEW Bills team that players will want to play for, and that, if this works out, will have been worth the 1st round pick in and of itself!