Tyrod Taylor shares thoughts on being benched despite 5-4 record
If the NFL playoffs started today, the Buffalo Bills would be in. Despite that, they are making a change at quarterback heading into Week 11, and Tyrod Taylor seems just as surprised as the rest of us.
Shortly after Bills head coach Sean McDermott announced that Taylor is being benched in favor of fifth-round rookie Nathan Peterman, the veteran said he is “obviously disappointed” but vowed to continue trying to be a leader.
“I don’t agree with the decision, but ultimately Coach McDermott has a vision for this team, what he feels is best for the team, as well as the owners and GM,” Taylor said, via Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. “So I have to move forward and continue to be the leader and teammate that I am from a different role.”
Taylor, a team captain, has not played poorly all season. He had a rough game against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, but the Bills allowed 298 rushing yards and five scores on the ground. Tom Brady wouldn’t have been able to win given how poorly Buffalo’s defense played. You can’t blame Taylor for being puzzled, but he is doing his best to take the high road.
“You learn from playing,” he said. “We’re 5-4. Games didn’t go the way we liked, some of the ones that we lost. You got to learn from it. I wouldn’t say you can pinpoint one thing that I did that led to this decision.”
Unless Peterman gets injured, it seems like the Taylor era in Buffalo is over. The 28-year-old is due a $6 million roster bonus next year and is scheduled to make $10 million in base salary for 2018. It’s unlikely that the Bills will keep him around, but Taylor still believes he can be a franchise quarterback.
“[I’m] very confident in my ability,” he said. “I think I’ve grown as a player the past three years and I’m going to continue to keep growing, whether I’m playing on Sundays or learning right now. I’m going to keep growing and I have full confidence I can be a franchise quarterback when the opportunity presents itself. I’ll continue to keep doing the things I know how to do.”
Taylor has a passer rating of 91.4 this season and has thrown 10 touchdowns compared to just three interceptions. If the Bills were out of playoff contention, you could understand them wanting to develop a rookie. Given the situation they find themselves in, benching Taylor seems like a huge mistake.