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Rex on EJ: Let's not just throw him out after two years

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Rex Ryan has stressed all offseason that the quarterback position will be an open competition in training camp for the Buffalo Bills. Should we believe him?

After all, it was just last August that Ryan and the Jets staged a faux competition between Geno Smith and Michael Vick. The Jets stacked the deck so far in Smith's favor that Vick wouldn't even play along, publicly disagreeing with the coaching staff's notion that he was competing for a starting job.

Fast forward to present day, and Ryan is facing a familiar problem with a new team. EJ Manuel, like Smith, is a high 2013 draft pick who's struggled in his first two seasons and was benched in his second season. Matt Cassel, like Vick, is a 30-something veteran with past success.

"You look at Matt Cassel, obviously he's won in this league," said Ryan, according to The Buffalo News. "He's been a Pro Bowl-quarterback, so there's that experience that you have.

"And then EJ. Let's not just throw him out after two years. Aaron Rodgers never took a snap for three years. So let's see where Manuel's going to be."

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The Bills also have Tyrod Taylor, who Ryan has said is "probably the fastest quarterback in the league" and former undrafted free agent Jeff Tuel.

"I'm lining them up to literally have a competition for the position," Ryan said. "People will say, 'Well, is this guy ahead of the other?' There's going to be assumptions, but the great thing is, let it play out. Give both guys the opportunity and then at the end of the day, the cream will rise to the top. It usually does."

We'll have a better idea who the Bills would like to see win the job based on first-team reps in upcoming team workouts. If Cassel and Manuel split those, consider it an honest competition.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast plays its newest game, 'What's your Fancy?' and debates if you'd trade Aaron Rodgers for Andrew Luck. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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