After the 2012 regular season, the Buffalo Bills decided they needed a new head coach. They fired Chan Gailey and brought in Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone.
Good move, I thought. But there is more work to be done.
The next item on the agenda: Releasing quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick.
An Associated Press story Tuesday said Fitzpatrick's future was in limbo. He's due a $3 million bonus this month his contract — 6 years, $59 million — is too much for a guy who has been mediocre the past two seasons. You can't be mediocre in the NFL and win on a regular basis. And you're not going to win with a mediocre quarterback.
The Bills need a fresh start with a new quarterback. They will likely take a quarterback in the first or second round. The team should move in that direction and end the Ryan Fitzpatrick era.
It's time for a change. The Bills have a new coaching staff. They should have a new quarterback.
Defensive end/linebacker Shawne Merriman announced his retirement Tuesday. While Merriman didn't do a lot with the Bills, he was an impact player for the San Diego Chargers in his first three seasons.
Merriman had 10 sacks in his rookie season. His sophomore season was even better. He registered 17 sacks in his second season and 12.5 sacks in his third.
In the 2008 season, Merriman was injured. He only played one game. The following season, in 2009, he played 14 games and registered four sacks.
But from 2010 to 2012, Merriman played a combined 18 games with the Chargers and Bills. He was never the same player.
Merriman has a lot of talent and was smart enough to know that he could do a lot of other things at a high level if he stepped away from the game. Good for him. Bills fans, including myself, wish him well.