EJ Manuel will be the starter against the New England Patriots Sunday according to Bills coach Doug Marrone. Marrone told the team Wednesday morning that EJ will take the snaps come Sunday with rookie Jeff Tuel serving as backup.

Manuel’s relatively quick recovery is the first good news the Bills have received the past three weeks. Injuries have stymied the progress of Marrone’s plans to turn around the franchise, losing Kevin Kolb for the season and Stephon Gilmore for eight weeks. Plus Safety Jarius Byrd is both unhappy with his contract and has plantar fasciitis, which is painful inflammation of the tissue on the sole of the foot.

Nothing pointing to Sunday spells success for the Bills. Playing the defending Division Champs with a rookie under center and a weak defensive secondary does not boost confidence.

The Bills do however, have CJ Spiller, Fred Jackson and Steve Johnson who have had big plays in the past against the Pats. Hopefully the offense can keep this one close enough to have fans still cheering in the 4th quarter. Lightning has struck before for the Bills at home against the Pats so let’s hope for cloudy skies.

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