The Barkley Bunch
Here we go another week and another new QB. The QB carousel keeps taking riders on and I wonder when they'll stop the line. So, this is only the 2nd time since 1970 the Bills have started four different quarterbacks in a season and we're only in week 10. Not only that Barkley is the second QB to start within 2 weeks of signing with the team. Barkley signed with the Bills on Halloween and we'll see if this move turned out to be a trick or a treat. Barkley is a odd case and the reason I say that is just the sheer promise that he showed in high school and college. However, once he got to the NFL his career just never took off and honestly had the Bills not come calling he may have been done. Barkley even admitted that he hadn't received any calls until the Bills picked up the phone.
Back in 2009 Barkley was the top prospect rated by ESPN and Rivals.com and he was highly recruited. He chose to go to USC and graduated from high school a semester early and was able to work out at spring practice with the Trojans. Barkley had a pretty decent college career overall. However, Barkley did end his college career with 132 rushing attempts for -113 yards and 6 TDs. But keep in mind still to this day the NCAA counts a sack as negative rushing yards. I hate that rule and it needs to go. A sack should not count as negative rushing yards. While Barkley did play all 4 years he got hurt at the end of his senior season which really caused his draft stock to take a hit. He may have been a first round pick but dropped to the 4th round in the 2012 draft and was picked 98th by the Eagles.
G Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A AY/A TD Int Rate
2009 FR USC 12 211 352 59.9 2735 7.8 6.8 15 14 131.3
2010 SO USC 12 236 377 62.6 2791 7.4 7.4 26 12 141.2
2011 JR USC 12 308 446 69.1 3528 7.9 9.0 39 7 161.2
2012 SR USC 11 246 387 63.6 3273 8.5 8.6 36 15 157.6
In Philly Barkley played with McCoy and McCoy had this to say about Matt. "I'm familiar with him. He's a smart kid, he's intelligent," McCoy said. "He'll have a tough time because they're a good defense and this is a fresh start. But I don't think it's nothing that he can't handle. We'll support him and we'll be behind him. I'm sure he'll have a good game and it'll be a tough matchup. It's a good defense." Barkley never really had a chance in Philly as he was competing against Michael Vick and Nick Foles who were both starters on the team.
Barkley was then traded to Arizona for a 2016 7th round pick and was cut by the Cardinals on September 4, 2015. Barkley was next signed by the Bears to their practice squad but was then promoted to the team a few weeks after. The Bears is where Barkley had his most playing time in stating 6 games. In March 2017 Barkley signed a 2 year contract with the 49ers only to be cut at the end of preseason. Barkley was then signed back to the Cardinals but was inactive the entire year. In March 2018 the Bengals Bengals signed Barkley to a 2 year but was released in September after suffering a knee injury. Then on Halloween he ended up with Buffalo and here we are. You can see his career numbers below. Not exactly stellar by any means but he's our starter so hopefully he can make some plays.
G GS Cmp Att Pct Yds Avg TD Int Rtg
Career 11 6 159 266 59.8 1,911 7.2 8 18 63.7
Barkley has had a lot to say about learning everything and starting out. "I think the toughest part, besides learning the offense, is just getting timing down with the receivers and just getting a feel for them," Barkley said. "That obviously comes with time. The longer you're with a guy the better you know him. I think the guys that we have here are fairly easy to read, just in terms of getting in and out of breaks and reading their body language." He went on further to say on preparing. "I've just been in that day and night grind mode, to put it bluntly. Just staying as long as I can, meeting with the staff," Barkley said. "I was with one of our offensive assistants in (Philadelphia), Shae Tierney, we were together. He's been really helpful getting me caught up to speed with everything. I think to my advantage I don't have to learn the whole playbook -- I have to learn this game plan. ... I know what we're doing this week and that's all that matters."
I think Peterman is done in Buffalo. The staff has again skipped him to start in place of a QB who has been here less than 2 weeks and didn't even play in 2017. I think the writing is clearly on the wall now and I'm not sure Peterman will find another gig in the NFL. Some people will speculate that we should have kept McCarron. I'll be honest, I was hoping we would but we didn't and that's that. Do I think Barkley is the answer? Probably not but we are playing a dinged up Jets team and moved the O line around slightly in hopes to get some better blocking and holes to run. The team needs to force turnovers and I'm not sure that will be as easy with McCown playing QB. I think the Jets are actually better with him behind center. He's certainly a capable backup and shouldn't hurt the Jets any more than Darnold would.
The playbook will be simple for Barkley and I'm sure the Bills attempt to establish the run early on to ease the pressure on Barkley. If the O line can't block for him it's going to be a long day as he not a QB known to take off and run. After today the Bills get a bye week and then an opportunity to really analyze some issues and get things figured out. This is most likely a tryout for Barkley. I think if he plays well he sticks and Peterman is gone. If he implodes anything could happen. No way the Bills still have 4 QBs after the bye week on the roster unless something crazy happens.
Well today is gameday so lets circle the wagons, beware the stampede and lets go Buffalo! Go ground the Jets!
Jeffrey T. Barnes | The Associated Press