Thursday, April 26, 2018
Colleges

Former FSU Seminole Manuel sharp in Bills debut

INDIANAPOLIS — EJ Manuel's teammates and coaches were pretty impressed with their rookie quarterback.

Buffalo's first-round draft pick thought he could have done more.

After completing 16 of 21 passes for 107 yards with one touchdown and a quarterback rating of 102.7, Manuel, a former Florida State standout, gave himself a "B" in his preseason debut, a solid mark after leading the Bills to a 44-20 victory Sunday at Indianapolis.

"My main thing was I wanted to operate the offense like Coach (Nathaniel) Hackett has taught us and get all the other guys in position," Manuel said. "The veterans have done a great job of bringing me along and things like that. The main thing is just continuing to go out there and execute."

It was only preseason, and he posted most of the big numbers against Indianapolis' backup defense, and, of course, there were a few mistakes.

But overall, Manuel executed the safe, simple game plan the way the Bills intended.

His short passes were accurate and on time. He sped up the game by quickly getting the Bills to the line. On the few occasions he ran, Manuel was effective. And when pressed to make plays in the two-minute offense, he drove the Bills into scoring position, then fired a rocket to Dorin Dickerson for a 17-yard score that broke a tie at 13 with 14 seconds left in the half.

The Colts' Andrew Luck played only two series, finishing 4-of-6 for 51 yards.

Manuel, on the other hand, played the entire first half and improved as the game went along, just as he did in last weekend's scrimmage. Still, only three of his completions went longer than 10 yards and two of the incompletions were throwaways.

While Manuel played mostly with Buffalo's starters, the Colts pulled their regulars early and had second- and third-stringers on the field when Manuel looked his best, going 9-of-10 for 68 yards in the 2-minute drill.

LIMPING BUT READY: Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith fully participated in practice and looked mostly sharp despite a sore right ankle that shortened his preseason debut at Detroit on Friday night. After being cleared for practice by team trainers, Smith, who's competing with Mark Sanchez for the starting job, worked with the first-team offense. Also, the Jets released running back John Griffin because of a broken left leg and signed running back Kahlil Bell and wide receiver Rahsaan Vaughn.

TOP PICK AILING: The Chiefs returned to practice without right tackle Eric Fisher, the No. 1 overall pick who hurt his right shoulder in Friday's preseason opener. Fisher also hurt his left thumb in the game, briefly leaving the sideline to get it taped up. But coach Andy Reid said that Fisher missed practice because of a separate shoulder injury. "It's a bruise in there," Reid said. "It really showed up late."

CLARK JOINS RAVENS: Veteran tight end Dallas Clark agreed in principle to a contract with the Ravens. Clark, 34, had 47 receptions for 435 yards and four touchdowns with the Bucs last season after nine years with the Colts. The Ravens also signed receiver Brandon Stokley, who spent the first four of his 14 seasons with the team, to a one-year contract, adding competition for the second and third wide receiver jobs.

FLOYD FINE: An MRI exam on Vikings rookie defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd showed no damage to his left knee, and the No. 23 overall pick in the draft and former Florida standout said he's ready to resume practice whenever he gets the okay.

BRONCOS: Punter Britton Colquitt agreed on a three-year contract extension through 2016.

GIANTS: Second-year receiver Kris Adams fractured his lower left leg during a third-quarter play against the Steelers on Saturday night.

LIONS: The team signed cornerback Myron Lewis, a 2010 third-round pick of the Bucs who was waived Thursday.

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