Word emerged on Wednesday that the Bills really, really like USC quarterback Matt Barkley. Per multiple reports, the Bills supposedly like him even more than Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib, who played for Bills coach Doug Marrone (and Bills offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett) at Syracuse.
Here’s our basic rule of thumb: Where there’s smoke, there’s a smokescreen.For months, Bills G.M. Buddy Nix has worn his heart on his sleeve when it comes to snagging a franchise quarterback. And the Bills have done little, before this week, to throw dirt on the obvious tracks that lead Marrone back to Syracuse.
Now, all of a sudden, the team that plays in Western New York supposedly wants the latest in a growing line of Southern Cal busts.
Former Jim Kelly would not approve, if Barkley becomes the pick. When politicking for the Bills to take a chance on Tim Tebow three years ago, Kelly said, “You look for a guy with good character, good leadership ability and good arm strength — and a guy who doesn’t come from California.”
Make no mistake about it — the Bills fear either the Jets or the Jaguars taking Nassib. It’s likely no coincidence that word of interest in Barkley has emerged on the heels of the disclosure that Buffalo is worried about getting buffaloed for Nassib.
While Barkley could end up being the round-two Plan B that the Bills will claim that they wanted all along, we continue to believe that Nassib is the preference, and that the Bills are feigning late interest in Barkley in a belated effort to throw everyone else off the scent.