Russ Brandon: Unless Manuel has a setback, he should play Sunday

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The Bills have cleared quarterback E.J. Manuel to return to practice after his knee surgery and it doesn’t sound like the team thinks he’ll need more than a few days of practice to be ready to play in a game.

Bills CEO Russ Brandon was on WGR 550 on Wednesday and said that the team’s coaches would evaluate Manuel’s progress during practice this week. Manuel’s going to be “full go” in those practice sessions and Brandon said the expectation is that the team will have him against the Steelers in Week 10 barring a turn for the worse in terms of his health.

“Unless he has a setback, he should be ready to go on Sunday,” Brandon said, via the team.

Coach Doug Marrone hasn’t offered the same kind of assurance about Manuel’s status and he showed with C.J. Spiller that he’s willing to keep a player on the bench when he thinks they aren’t fit enough to play. Restraint may be an even bigger factor with Manuel, whose future as the starting quarterback is at least as important as any present gains the team may realize from his immediate return.