PFF deems EJ Manuel 'poor' starter

Pro Football Focus, a major third-party analytics website that grades NFL players, deemed Buffalo Bills quarterback EJ Manuel a 'poor' starter in a depth chart posted Thursday.

The website, which assigns numerical grades based on film analysis of each regular-season snap, grouped Bills players into eight quality tiers, ranging from "elite" to "poor starter."

Manuel was among six Bills players receiving the "poor" grade, along with quarterback Jeff Tuel, wide receiver T.J. Graham, guard Chris Williams, defensive end Jarius Wynn and punter Brian Moorman.

While Pro Football Focus' grading isn't done with inside knowledge of a player's responsibilities on a given play, it has gained traction in league circles. Agents and teams will use the data in contract negotiations, as seen in this recent "mock negotiation" by a former agent and NFL contract negotiator on National Football Post.