Buffalo Bills make smart move by signing Derek Anderson

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

The Buffalo Bills added to their quarterback room on Tuesday morning, signing veteran quarterback Derek Anderson to the 53-man roster and releasing safety Dean Marlowe.

The Buffalo Bills finally added a veteran quarterback on Tuesday with the signing of Derek Anderson. A 12-year veteran, Anderson has seen time as a starter and a backup in his NFL career.

He began his career in Cleveland where he started three games in 2006, then becoming the full-time starter in 2007 with 15 games started, throwing for a career high 3,787 yards, 29 touchdowns and picking up 10 wins. He went to his only Pro Bowl in that season.

After that, he won a total of six games out of 16 games started in 2008 and 2009 combined in Cleveland. He then moved onto Arizona in 2010 where he went 2-7 in nine starts. From 2011 to last season, Anderson served as Cam Newton’s backup playing a total of 25 games and starting four for a 2-2 record.

This move is long overdue for the Bills. Signing a veteran quarterback was something the team needed to do at the beginning of the season to help with a rookie quarterback. While that doesn’t necessarily mean the veteran should have been starting, having a player who has been there before and gathered a wealth of knowledge about the position, scenarios, and being a professional would have been beneficial to an inexperienced quarterback room.

When the team traded AJ McCarron and named Nathan Peterman the starter, they failed to have a credible backup plan. While McCarron was not the most experienced player, he at least had experience in the league as a starter and a backup and was proven in handling several aspects of being a professional quarterback.

When they traded him, they were left with Josh Allen the rookie and Peterman, the fifth-round pick who had started two games – finished none – and put up one of the worst halves of football in league history.

While it took them too long to do it, signing Anderson is a good move for Buffalo. He has similar measurables to Allen and was Cam Newton’s backup from his rookie season in 2011 until last season. Whether he can help mold Allen into a player anywhere close to Newton’s success is not guaranteed, but having someone in his ear who has not only helped a young quarterback but has also had the experience starting in the league will only help.

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Anderson should immediately become QB2 on the depth chart and should move Peterman to the inactive list on game days. While this move doesn’t bode well for Peterman, it isn’t surprising that he was not cut. The franchise has an unusual love-affair with the former Pitt Panther. However in the long-term, the Bills should look for a better backup QB.