The Buffalo Bills have been struggling to find a franchise quarterback for years and that unfortunately has not changed. The Bills have decided to let EJ Manuel become a free agent after the 2016 season. Manuel is currently the backup quarterback behind starter Tyrod Taylor

Manuel labor

The Florida State graduate was drafted by the Bills in 2013 as the 16th overall pick. He signed a four-year contract for $8.88 million with a $4.85 million signing bonus and was coached by Doug Marrone.

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In his rookie season, Manuel was plagued by injuries to his right knee and had few highlights, save for his Pepsi Next NFL Rookie of the Week performance against the Carolina Panthers.

He was then benched for the majority of his sophmore season in favor of the more experienced Kyle Orton. When Orton and Marrone retired the next season, Manual was forced to adapt to a new coach, Rex Ryan and new competition in Taylor.

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Manuel would ultimately lose the starting position to Taylor and be relegated to third string quarterback behind Matt Cassel. Cassel was then traded to the Dallas Cowboys in 2015, giving Taylor second string status once again. He started just two games in the 2015 season after Taylor was hurt, which he lost but he was always supportive of his teammates.

Now comes the news that the Bills have declined to extend Manual's contract even though the future parting is amicable. General Manager Doug Whaley maintains that the team still feels "very comfortable" with Manuel as their 2016 back up quarterback.

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The team will start the season with Taylor as the starting quarterback, Manuel as the backup and newly drafted Cardale Jones as the third string quarterback. 

Life off the field

For his part, Manuel has been mum. He's currently focused on the upcoming registration for the EJ Manuel Football camp which he is hosting this year at Bayside High School. 

It's typical of Manuel who takes an active role in enriching the lives of the youth in his community.

He recently spoke to the Boys & Girls Club in Rochester on his day off. It's unclear what the future might hold for Manuel, but it's safe to say that he has made an impact with his team and in the community.

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