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By Joe Buscaglia
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Bills WR on EJ: "It's the best I've ever seen him"

While the Buffalo Bills wrapped up their second joint practice with the Pittsburgh Steelers, there was one overwhelming story line that had to do with the player every fan is hoping to see more from in 2014. Bills starting quarterback EJ Manuel had, by many accounts, his best practice since the team started training camp.

It wasn’t just a reaction from the onlooking media, either. His teammates definitely took notice as he was spreading the ball around during team drills on the campus of Saint Vincent College against Steelers defenders.

“I told EJ, man, to be honest I told, my exact words: It's the best I've ever seen him,” said wide receiver Mike Williams. “I don't think he incompleted a pass today. Everything was on time, we got everything we wanted, it was like perfect. Coming out of our breaks, the ball right there... this is the best I've seen him. If he keeps getting like this, we're going to be something to play with.”

Manuel looked crisp on the majority of his throws and hit his receivers in stride throughout team drills on Thursday. While he has performed well on occasion at St. John Fisher College during training camp, what was it about Thursday’s practice that helped him play at that level?

“Competition. It's a competitive environment, we're going against a different team,” Manuel answered. “Obviously this is their house so we wanted to come in and give them a good look. And we didn't want them to feel like we were wasting their time.”

The practice was perhaps his best since he’s taken the field in 2014, but one practice does not mean that Manuel has arrived. The quarterback would even be the first to admit that.

“I thought I was consistent, and that's something I want to continue to build on,” he said. “Don't let it be a one, or a two, or a three-day streak... make it an every day thing. It's a process. I'm still going to continue to buy into the process.”

Manuel and the Bills concluded their two-day practice session in Latrobe, Pennsylvania on Thursday night. The two teams get Friday off and meet once again in a preseason setting at Heinz Field on Saturday night.

Twitter: @JoeBuscaglia

**Photo courtesy of The Associated Press

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08/14/2014 9:02PM
Bills WR on EJ: "It's the best I've ever seen him"
Please enter your comments below.
08/14/2014 9:16PM
We are going to the Super Bowl!
Woooooop Super Bowl!!!!L Still don't know who the hell this Pete carges is
08/14/2014 9:30PM
I love you EJ
I wrote this article for you! Love, Mom
08/14/2014 9:30PM
"It's the best I've ever seen him"
What's Williams supposed to say - he wants to make the team and wants to be perceived as a team guy. What's he seen of Manual - a total of 10 or a dozen practices. And yet Bills fans will suck this up because they want to hope.
08/14/2014 10:23PM
What is the Chance..
that this continues????
08/15/2014 12:21AM
Mr. Buscaglia
So he had a good day according to his receivers and onlooking media. But, What is your take? You hv been somewhat critical of EJ's play, which is cool with me, but yesterday you said he had a poor day and today his coach said he had one of his better days.
08/15/2014 5:25AM
I just dont get it
EJ held his own camps, hired an agency and the team hired a QB coach in Todd from Detroit. They also drafted and brought in as many weapons as possible along with upgrading the o-line. I have followed like everybody else. Somedays after reading about how he performed and watching highlights. I think to myself " Is he serious ? " " Can he even be this bad after all of that and a offseason. " well apparently so, then when I see predictions of 4-12 by other analysts, I get extremely worried Then, I read articles like this and I think, Wow, he is doing better, our season is going to be just fine. We could be a playoff team. Just to much inexperience and inconsistency. FOR THE LOVE OF GOD PLEASE END THE DROUGHT
08/15/2014 8:49AM
Mike Rodak II?
Instead of being negative and saying "but one practice does not mean that Manuel has arrived" how about that he is progressing especially after his good game last week against Carolina
08/15/2014 9:31AM
Fans have had it, PERIOD! How much time, do you wait for a #1 draft choice to show any or more progress, I repeat, a #1 draft choice? Time is wasting, 14/15 years.
08/15/2014 10:07AM
Bills History On Drafting QBS.
Since Jim Kelly retired Feb 1st 1997, every QB the (Bills) have drafted, 99.9% seem to be a BUST, WHY? Wow 17 years and still counting? Excluded are proven veterans from other teams Drew Bledsoe and Doug Flutie that couldn't get it done here in Buffalo? Most other NFL teams seem to hit the mark on drafting QBs, what gives here in Buffalo? We use #1 draft picks and still have to use excuses that, OH it will take 2-3 years to TRAIN? Other NFL teams show instant gratification in their QB draft choices play and success. Waiting 17 years to get Jim Kelly's replacement is a very long time. P.S. I'm not insinuating that you could ever replace Jim Kelly! EVER!
08/15/2014 10:10AM
Let's not overlook the Bills regular season schedule to some
It does have 4-12 possibilities no matter what the circumstances are. Let's not go on the cheap when someone goes down is one of them. There are veterans out there. Ask New England. So let's not get carried away here.
08/15/2014 3:00PM
this is our year!!
08/15/2014 4:32PM
Encouraged, but not entirely sold...
What we may be seeing is the fact that our Defensive line / team is so aware of what he's doing that it intimidates him. On the other hand, as Ian Hunter once said... "You're never alone with a schizophrenic".
08/17/2014 12:30AM
Let's get real...
The Bill's have a back up QB pretending to be a starter and two third stringers pretending to be back ups. Here we go again wasting 5 years waiting for a miracle at the QB position.
08/17/2014 5:11PM
EJ is not the answer
Agree totally with the "I just don't get it" post. EJ may be ready at some point, but it's not now. If he's the Bills QB this season, they won't make the playoffs again. Bills should have gone for Alex Smith before the Chiefs got him. I think Kyle Orton is still available. I think this would be a different offense with a veteran quarterback.
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