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Jeff Tuel seems nice, but should he be the Bills' starting QB?

August 27, 2013|By Chuck Schilken
  • Jeff Tuel throws to a receiver against the Washington Redskins during a preseason game at FedEx Field in Landover, Md.
Jeff Tuel throws to a receiver against the Washington Redskins during a… (Patrick Smith / Getty Images )

Jeff Tuel seems like a perfectly nice guy.

And the Buffalo Bills could be on the verge of giving him the opportunity of a lifetime.

Sure, he might use the word "brotha" a bit too much on Twitter. But he also tweets uplifting messages or just plain nice things (his bio simply states: "Striving to improve on a daily basis").

And he could become the first undrafted rookie quarterback to start in an NFL opener since the league went to a common draft in 1967.

Not bad for a guy who went 4-22 as a starter at Washington State (throwing for 5,932 yards and completing 61.3% of his passes with 33 touchdowns and 25 interceptions) and wasn't even invited to the NFL scouting combine.

But Tuel has looked good in the preseason, completing 31 of 43 for 299 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions -- enough to land him the Bills' No. 3 quarterback spot.

But with the teams' other two quarterbacks down with injuries -- veteran Kevin Kolb with a concussion and rookie first-round draft pick EJ Manuel with a knee injury -- Tuel suddenly finds himself at the top of the depth chart.

Manuel could be back in time for the season opener against New England on Sept. 8, and the Bills just signed quarterbacks Matt Leinart and Thaddeus Lewis as insurance policies.

But for right now at least, Tuel is the man in Buffalo.

"Right now we're planning on Jeff Tuel playing the first game, and we're working with EJ to get back as quickly as possible," Coach Doug Marrone said. "Meaning New England. Right now that's how we're going about planning on doing it until we know more about where EJ is."

All that is just fine with Tuel, brotha!

“I came here to play football, and that's what I'm doing,” Tuel said. “It just explains, you can never expect. You never know what's going to happen in this league."

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