(WGR) Some quick thoughts on Buffalo Bills quarterback Derek Anderson's retirement announcement Thursday evening:
It was surprising, mostly because of the way he talked about coming back and playing when he signed his extension in December. In fact, at locker cleanout day, he even sounded as if he was ready to compete for the No. 2 job and seemed taken aback when a reporter suggested Matt Barkley would be the backup in 2019.
Anderson knew his role as Josh Allen's mentor and what that meant and why the team wanted him back. He did a great job in that role. The change in Allen was really noticeable after Anderson's arrival last October.
Anderson's retirement is not a huge deal from a roster standpoint. But the Bills must hope Allen can carry those lessons and and not need someone such as Anderson around on a daily basis to get to where he needs to be in 2019. It mattered.
Anderson never gave any indication he ever wanted to coach, only play. Coaching would require even more hours and (most likely) less pay. But who knows? Maybe he is interested in that.
It was interesting that GM Brandon Beane told the team's website that he knew Anderson's retirement was a possibility heading into the draft. It makes much more sense now why the Bills signed Tyree Jackson as an undrafted free agent when so many questioned the need to do so.
Jackson has a legit shot to make the roster now. Maybe they only keep two quarterbacks. Can he beat out Barkley? If he doesn't but shows enough in training camp and the preseason, he may force their hand to keep all three.
Either way, he'll now get more reps and it will be fun to watch play out.
By Sal Capaccio