Bills' E.J. Manuel to undergo knee surgery, done for preseason
The team did not announce immediately after Friday’s game that Manuel had an injury. But later on Saturday, coach Doug Marrone said in a statement posted on the team’s official website that Manuel experienced some swelling in his left knee and will need to undergo “minor” knee surgery.
"An MRI revealed that he will need to have a minor knee procedure and that has been scheduled," Marrone said in the statement. "He will miss the remainder of the preseason and then be re-evaluated at that time.”
Marrone also said that veteran Kevin Kolb will be the starting quarterback in the Bills’ third preseason next Saturday against the Washington Redskins. The injury also leaves the door open for Kolb to potentially make a comeback and improve his chances of starting the regular season, since currently it is a toss-up whether or not Manuel can even be ready by Week 1.
Kolb, who was signed by the Bills earlier in March, has been battling the Bills’ 16th overall pick Manuel for the starting quarterback job all offseason. The 6-foot-3, 218-pound Kolb spent the past two seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, and before that he played the first-four seasons of his career with the New England Patriots – who selected him in the second round of the 2007 NFL draft. The six-year pro Kolb has started 21 of 32 career games, throwing for 28 touchdowns and 25 interceptions while being sacked 77 times.
The 28-year-old Kolb also started Friday’s game after missing the Bills’ first preseason game due to a freak knee injury. However, Kolb struggled in his return this week, completing just 13 of 21 passes for 119 yards, zero touchdowns and an interception against the Vikings.
Manuel, who played the entire third-quarter, clearly outplayed Kolb on the field Friday as he completed 27 of 33 passes for 199 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. He also ran four times for 29 yards in the game.
Jeff Tuel is the Bills’ third-string quarterback on the depth chart.
Marrone also announced that wide receiver Kevin Elliot was done for the 2013 season after suffering an ACL tear.