Posted by Josh Katzowitz
While I probably shouldn’t be surprised that the Bills have given quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick a reported six-year contract extension worth $59 million with a $24 million guarantee, I just don’t know if it makes sense.
He’s been solid the past two seasons as Buffalo’s No. 1 guy (and he’s been better this year than he was last season), but I can’t erase the visions of his play in 2008 when he replaced an injured Carson Palmer in Cincinnati. I thought he was nothing more than a backup then, and though, in a few ways, he’s proven that he is a capable starting quarterback, you have to wonder how long his career peak will last.
And if this deal ultimately will be worth it for the Bills.
As CBSSports.com’s Clark Judge writes, “I just wonder why they were in such a rush. I mean, the guy has been a backup most of his career, then broke into the starting lineup off and on the past two years after Trent Edwards fizzled. Now, six games into the season we've seen enough to believe he's a franchise quarterback? Geez, I don't know. I mean, he's 15-17 as a starter with Buffalo.”
I have little doubt that the Bills love the guy (obviously), and I know he’s a Harvard-educated man that plays the game in a smart way. Plus, pairing him with coach Chan Gailey might be the best thing that ever happened to Fitzpatrick. But $59 million for Fitzpatrick seems like a steep price to pay for a quarterback who’s probably hit the ceiling on how well he can play.
Hell, maybe I’m wrong. After all, Fitzpatrick went from being a backup who played minimally during the first three years of his career to a guy who commands nearly $10 million a year. The odds of that happening -- and Fitzpatrick could probably give us the exact figure -- could not have been good.
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