Pete Metzelaars was relieved of his duties as the Bills’ tight ends coach along with the rest of the team’s coaching staff at the end of the 2012 season and he’s not shy about sharing his thoughts about why the team underperformed to the point that they decided to clean house on the sideline.
Metzelaars points the finger squarely at quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, saying that finding a quarterback has to be the team’s No. 1 priority this offseason. Metzelaars had some unkind words about the play of the defense as well, but his comments made it clear that he thinks Fitzpatrick’s play was the biggest reason why he and his former colleagues lost their jobs.
“If you have a dominating defense, you can get by with an average to below-average quarterback. If you don’t have a dominating defense, you need a winning quarterback in the NFL,” Metzelaars said, via the Buffalo News. “Fitz is an average to below-average kind of guy, and unfortunately he made some bad decisions at the end of games and then didn’t make plays at the ends of other games we had chances to win. So it’s got to start there.”
Metzelaars pointed to several close losses as games that the Bills could have won with better play from the quarterback, leaving the Bills with a better record and, perhaps, Metzelaars with a job. You could chalk his comments up to hurt feelings, but the fact that the Bills are bringing Tarvaris Jackson back for an “open competition” this offseason suggests that the former Bills tight end isn’t the only one who feels the Bills need more at the quarterback position.