If the Buffalo Bills think they've solved their QB problems by signing Kevin Kolb, they need to think again. Buffalo just released a Kolb-like clone in Ryan Fitzpatrick and expecting another weaker armed QB like Kolb to come in and succeed beyond what Fitzpatrick was able to produce is just pipe-dreaming.
After two seasons in Arizona where Kolb was unable to stay healthy for more than 15 games, Buffalo would be well-advised to still use either their first or second round picks on a signal caller. Despite the fact the 2013 NFL Draft doesn't have an elite QB prospect Buffalo still needs to either draft West Virginia's Geno Smith with the 8th overall pick in round one (which I believe they will do if Smith is still there), or use their second round pick to grab Syracuse's Ryan Nassib or Florida State's E.J. Manuel.
Nassib is especially intriguing as new Buffalo head coach, Doug Marrone, was Nassib's head coach in college at Syracuse before taking the Bill's job this off-season. Nassib was Marrone's QB the last 3 seasons at Syracuse and is considered one of the top 5 QB prospects in the 2013 NFL Draft.
But back to Kolb…
Kolb, like the QB he'll be replacing is no more than a stop gap answer at the QB position for the Bills. His below average arm-strength will remind Buffalo fans of Fitzpatrick, especially in the colder winter months of the season. His short-intermediate accuracy is a little better than Fitzpatrick's, but whereas Fitzpatrick started 45 consecutive games for Buffalo, the longest consecutive starting streak of Kolb's career is only 7 games. Kolb has had an inability to stay healthy and remain in games during his time with both Philadelphia and Arizona.
Let's look at the stats for the two QB's.
Fitzpatrick 2011: 16 games started, 3,832 pass yards, 24 TD's, 23 int's.
Fitzpatrick 2012: 16 games started, 3,400 pass yards, 24 TD's, 16 int's
Kolb: 15 games combined the last two seasons, 3,124 pass yards, 17 TD's, 11 int's
And while in Buffalo Kolb will have Stevie Johnson at WR, in Arizona, he had Larry Fitzgerald. About the only thing Kolb will have with Buffalo that he didn't with the Cardinals are capable RB's. C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson are both far superior to anyone the Cardinals have trotted out the last 2 seasons. There's a good chance the offensive line in Buffalo will be better than what Kolb knew in Arizona, but as someone who lives in Arizona and has watched a lot of Arizona Cardinals football over the years, I can tell you that Kolb is at least partially to blame for the 57 sacks he took in those 15 games he played in Arizona. Kolb holds onto the football too long when his receivers aren't open right away. Instead of throwing it away, he will wait, hoping to make a play, and it usually gets him in trouble, leading to sacks, and sometimes fumbles.
While I liked Kolb's chances of succeeding in a west coast style of offense when he first was drafted, I do not think he has shown the ability to play at a high level consistently, or stay healthy, for him to be any better than what the Bills experienced with Fitzpatrick.