ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Don't expect to see EJ Manuel on the field again soon.
That was the message that Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone sent Wednesday when asked if Kyle Orton's status as the starter would change even if the Bills are effectively eliminated from the playoffs with a loss Sunday against the Green Bay Packers.
Here was his full exchange with reporters during Wednesday's news conference:
Q: When you say Orton gives you the best chance to win, does that change if you are eliminated?
Marrone: "No, not for me. Unless it changes for somebody else."
Q: If you're 7-8 and you still think Orton gives you the best chance to win Week 17, you'd play him instead of EJ?
Marrone: "Every week, I'm going to make that decision. If I get to 7-8, I'll make that decision. But right now, absolutely, I will play Kyle Orton because he gives us the best chance to win now."
Q: What does that mean in regards to your thoughts on EJ and his development?
Marrone: "Just keep progressing. Just keep bringing him along."
Q: What do you mean by "somebody else" as far as Orton not being the starter?
Marrone: "If you're asking me, personally, my decision is he's going to play. If you ask somebody else, they might tell you something different. I don't know."
Q: But to clarify, it's your decision?
Marrone: "It's my decision, correct."
Q: People are wondering, "What are you going to do next year?" I can see you six months from now that EJ is the franchise quarterback.
Marrone: "That's your opinion."
Q: How is he going to be the franchise quarterback again without playing?
Marrone: "That's your opinion. Right? So I respect your opinion."
Q: Does it make it difficult for the franchise to plan ahead at the most important position when you're still up in the air about the guy who is supposed to be your franchise guy?
Marrone: "I will say this: My job right now is to win a football game. And that's how I see it. So I'm doing the best job I can to win a football game, plain and simple."