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EJ Manuel signs Buffalo Bills rookie contract

The Buffalo Bills have their young quarterback under contract.

The team announced Friday that EJ Manuel has signed his rookie contract, ensuring that the draft's 16th overall pick will be ready for the start of next month's training camp on July 28.

Financial terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Manuel is just the eighth first-round draft pick to sign. The former Florida State passer has spent time improving his uneven footwork this offseason, but his athleticism is unquestioned. Coach Doug Marrone last month called Manuel the most impressive rookie he'd ever been around.

"It's a great feeling and I'm excited to be truly part of the team now," Manuel told the team's official site. "I had no doubt at all. I knew I was going to be here and it was going to be done before training camp. I'm just glad it was done earlier instead of later."

Manuel spent organized team activities as the third quarterback behind Kevin Kolb and the now departed Tarvaris Jackson. At this week's mandatory minicamp, Kolb continued to work with the first team, but Manuel took plenty of snaps.

Manuel isn't a game-ready passer the way Andrew Luck was a season ago, not even close, but you don't draft a quarterback at No. 16 to sit him. Kolb has expressed happiness over landing with the Bills, but he's a placeholder. We wouldn't be stunned to see Manuel under center come Week 1.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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