The Patriots need to beat the Bills to assure themselves a first round bye in the AFC playoffs, but they still don’t know which quarterback they’ll be facing come Sunday.
E.J. Manuel was a limited participant in practice again on Thursday and coach Doug Marrone said afterward that Manuel looked improved as he comes back from the knee injury that kept him out of last weekend’s victory over the Dolphins. Marrone didn’t say when he would decide between Manuel and Thad Lewis, but did say he preferred to make the call sooner rather than later.
“The earlier I can make a decision I think the better it is for the team,” Marrone said, via ESPN.com. “That’s how I approached it all year. This way the team knows what we have going into it.”
The Bills took a 21-17 lead into the fourth quarter in the season opener against the Patriots with Manuel throwing for 150 yards and two touchdowns in his first NFL start. Two Stephen Gostkowski field goals in the fourth quarter gave the Patriots a road win they hope winds up as the first half of a season sweep.