After a dismal 47-10 defeat to the Saints in Week 10, Bills coach Sean McDermott announced Wednesday that rookie quarterback Nathan Peterman will start the team's Week 11 contest against the Chargers, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
McDermott told reporters at his weekly Wednesday morning news conference the decision, "first and foremost", was his alone, at least from a coaching standpoint. So the Bills will turn to the fifth-round rookie out of Pittsburgh and see where that leads after Peterman completed seven of 10 passes for 79 yards and a touchdown in sub duty Sunday, which was also his first National Football League regular-season action.
The switch to Peterman from incumbent and captain Tyrod Taylor comes as a surprise, but also at a time when the Bills' offense could desperately use a shot in the arm. In his place, Peterman completed 7-of-10 passes for 79 yards and a touchdown. Peterman was selected in the fifth round of the draft after splitting his college career at Pittsburgh and Tennessee.
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It's an interesting decision because the Bills, despite two horrific one-sided losses in succession, are 5-4 and sitting in the sixth and final spot in the AFC playoff picture. "We want to have a chance to make the playoffs". "I wouldn't make this move if I didn't think he was ready". Peterman will have the benefit of a healthier pass-catching corps with Jordan Matthews, Charles Clay and recently acquired ex-Panther Kelvin Benjamin that Taylor rarely had this season.
McDermott would only say "we'll see", when asked if Peterman will remain the starter beyond this weekend, but also acknowledged he's not going to "send him out there with a leash". In August they traded franchise receiver Sammy Watkins to the Los Angeles Rams, 2015 second-round pick and the team's top cornerback Ronald Darby to Philadelphia, and last year's second-round linebacker Reggie Ragland to Kansas City. "It wasn't like they were giving him just a little bit". Sean McDermott is going about this quarterback situation like he knows something we don't. He's a hard worker, dedicated to improvement, whom teammates respect and admire.
Brass-balls moves don't scare these guys one bit.