The effort, however, proved more futile than force-feeding peas to a petulant child.
Despite going for it twice on fourth-and-short while in field-goal range to try to get Manuel his first touchdown of the preseason, the Bills' offense remains a boxer without a knockout punch.
"Coming off the field, it was frustrating," Manuel said, per The Buffalo News. "I'm not going to lie."
"He put us in a situation where we were moving the football," Marrone said, "and that's what you want your quarterback to do. He put us in a situation where we could make the plays."
The problem is that good quarterbacks don't just set the table, they make the plays.
In three games Buffalo's first-team offense has had 10 possessions: four field goals, three failed fourth-and-short attempts, one pick and two punts. On those drives Manuel is 28 of 47 (59.6 percent) for 263 yards (5.6 yards per attempt) and zero touchdowns.
The Bills might be able to move the ball between the 20s, but if Manuel can't guide his team to the end zone it will be another long, cold year in western New York.