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Bills to start EJ Manuel vs. Bengals

Last we heard from Bills coach Rex Ryan, he was vacillating between holding out hope that Tyrod Taylor will play and tacitly conceding that his starting quarterback's sprain MCL will likely keep him out of Sunday's meeting with the Bengals.

With less than 24 hours until game time, we are finally gaining some clarity on the quarterback situation in Buffalo.

NFL Media's Albert Breer reports EJ Manuel will start for the Bills. Taylor tried to convinced the coaches he could play, per Breer, but the knee just isn't ready.

The news comes as no surprise. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport initially reported that the injury would keep Taylor out this week and the Bills will re-evaluate him next week.

Manuel received the majority of first-team practice reps the past few days.

Ryan explained last month that the coaching staff's confidence in Manuel was a factor in the Matt Cassel trade to Dallas.

"EJ did a tremendous job in the preseason," Ryan explained. "At this spot, this was more done by how we view EJ Manuel than Matt Cassel. EJ will develop more as the two than the three."

After being benched for Kyle Orton last season and failing to beat out Taylor this past summer, this is Manuel's chance to prove the organization's newfound faith in his abilities isn't misplaced.

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