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EJ Manuel had second surgery on left knee following season

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NEW YORK -- Bills quarterback EJ Manuel underwent a second surgery on his left knee earlier this month following the conclusion of the 2013 season.

"It was a minor procedure," Manuel said today in the Sheraton New York Times Square Hotel, site of the media center for Super Bowl XXVIII. "Just like a 20-minute, in-and-out cleanup of the ligaments and things like that, so I'm happy I got it done. It kind of put it past me. Obviously with the rehab and things like that, it'll get back to full strength and I don't think it will bother me at all."

Manuel previously had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in the same knee in August. He plans to wear a brace on the knee moving forward

"Now I have a clean slate, not to worry about it," he said. "If you look around the league, a lot of quarterbacks ... I know Andrew Luck wears one, Peyton Manning wears one on that front leg. You'll have some defenders come down, you don't want to risk getting whatever type of knee injury. So just to kind of ignore for the rest of my career, I'll have a brace, but it won't inhibit me from still being able to take off and run."

Manuel said that he's hasn't started running yet, but that "I'll be able to run when the time is to run."

"It's still January, it's still very early in the offseason, so there's no need to run. If I had to, I could, though," he said.

Manuel said the only good news is that none of the injuries were more severe.

"They're not ACLs or MCLs, which take a year or however long to recover from," he said. "If I'm going to have a knee injury, I would rather have the ones that I had. I'd rather have them earlier, I guess, than later, to get it behind me and just start our legacy as a team and move forward.

"The good thing is I'm 23, so I'm still young. My body will bounce back fine. It's not going to slow me down. I'll still be able to run a 4.5 or a 4.6, so I'll be in good shape."

Manuel said he didn't necessarily believe in bad or good luck. The injuries limited him to 10 games in his rookie season. He led the Bills to a 4-6 record in those games, throwing 11 touchdowns and nine interceptions to go with 1,972 yards.

"The only one that I could really say that ... I could have got out of bounds maybe a step earlier, but I still think I was doing the right thing trying to get more yards. The guy just got me in the wrong spot," he said, referring to the sprained lateral collateral ligament he suffered in October against Cleveland. "It seemed to play out that way. I don't think it has anything to do with my body, I think it could have happened to anybody. It's unfortunate that it happened three times, but the season's over with now, you can look forward to a new one."

Manuel's here to take part in a skills clinic Friday at Chelsea Piers for 150 New York-area youth football players. The Panini Pop Warner Skills Clinic will also include the New York Giants' Jason Pierre-Paul, Jacksonville's Denard Robinson and Atlanta's Harry Douglas. Manuel and Co. will lead players through a series of football drills and talk to them about their own experiences. After the clinic, they'll sign autographs for the participants.

  • George Winston III

    Bad luck or good luck? How about no luck at all.

  • Millhouse

    Why was this minor procedure kept secret by the Bills? I seem to recall Marrone or someone else in the organization stating that surgery (post season) was not necessary.

    • Lou Hoebel

      Now this is a good question. One that I am sure the crack [BN] staff will get an answer to along with a full explanation of why, how and what it portends for the future.

    • jim

      The front office of this organization is all about keeping secrets, right down to the lamest strategy of refusing to name the starting quarterback essentially until game day.

    • ptato22

      The coaches and admin are secretive because they know down deep that they are gambling on EJ. There's no good reason to believe he will be the answer for the Bills. I think it's still possible, but there is no indication after last season that the pick was a real crafty, intelligent one. Instead of securing the QB spot more with another one this coming draft, they're "all in" on EJ. Only a select few gamblers win on "all in". Everybody else goes home empty handed. Why not get another one just in case? What could it hurt? Even if EJ turns out to be the best in decades, it won't hurt to have another good one. The Bills will never get to the playoffs without a good QB. Just look at the teams who won at least one playoff game this year. Good QBs who stay healthy.

  • Michalli

    Please draft a quarterback!

    • Lou Hoebel

      Why? His arm is fine. His hands are fine. There are no running quarterbacks in the NFL ...at least Not For Long.

      • Michalli

        Why...because I don't want him spending half of each season on the sidelines.

        • jim

          Not to worry. Only two more seasons at most.

  • disqus_05Onb848Hn

    Should have gotten a warranty before we drafted him. Injuries seem to follow Manuel. The Bills need insurance should Manuel consistently miss games. Lewis isn't the answer.

  • jim

    'I know Andrew Luck wears one, Peyton Manning wears one on that front leg.'

    The problem here, EJ, is that you're not Andrew Luck or Peyton Manning, so kindly dispense with the ridiculous comparisons. FYI, braces don't automatically prevent knee injuries either.

  • AC

    Real hard to get excited about this guy. Every time he takes a hit you will have to wonder if he will get up. His accuracy is very suspect - 10 to 15 yard passes way over guys heads and his sideline passes were usually well out of bounds. He seems like a good kid and saying all the right things, but so did Trent Edwards. Bills can't ignore the QB position this off season. Moves need to be made as the small sample set indicates this kid won't pan out.

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Vic Carucci returned to The Buffalo News as a Bills beat reporter in September. Carucci covered the Bills for 17 years before joining NFL.com as a columnist in 1999. Prior to rejoining The News, he spent three years as a senior editor for the Cleveland Browns.

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida.