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Patriots vs. Bills: Know Their Quarterback

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A closer look at Bills' quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick as the Patriots prepare to play the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Name: Ryan Fitzpatrick

HT/WT: 6-2, 225 lbs

Experience: 8th season

2012 Stats: 50 completions, 86 attempts, 581 yards, 8 TD, 3 INT, 95.2 Rating

Last Week (24-14 W at Cleveland): 22/35, 208 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT, 107.8 Rating

Scouting Report: Ryan Fitzpatrick is a talented quarterback who has good size, arm strength and vision. He can execute his second and third reads, and when he gets hot, he is actually one of the NFL's better quarterbacks. But that's the thing: Fitzpatrick is one of the NFL's more inconsistent quarterbacks and when he plays poorly, he really unwinds. Patriots fans don't have to think far back to the last time this happened: week 17 of the 2011 season, when the team rolled up 49 unanswered on the struggling Bills. Fitzpatrick, similar to Joe Flacco last week, performs well when blitz. If the Patriots do a good job disguising their coverages, using a four man rush, and getting Fitzpatrick out of their comfort zone early, they should have success in stopping the Bills' passing offense.

What They're Saying: Brian Galliford of Buffalo Rumblings writes that Fitzpatrick, every since a week one loss to the Jets, has been hot as any other quarterback in the league:

At the moment that the Bills found themselves down 41-7 to Rex Ryan and the Jets in Week 1, Fitzpatrick was 8-of-15 (53.3 percent completions) for 75 yards (5.0 yards per attempt) with no touchdowns, three picks and a quarterback rating of 27.8. (Yeah, he was really, really bad.) Since that point - including most of the second half against the Jets and subsequent wins against the Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns - Fitzpatrick is 45-of-71 (63.4 percent) for 506 yards (7.1 per attempt) with eight touchdowns, no picks and a rating of 122.2.

For two and a half games, Fitzpatrick has been what the team has needed him to be: a quarterback capable of moving the chains in key situations and putting the ball in the end zone. He has not put up huge numbers (aside from the very respectable touchdown total) and has had plenty of poor throws, but he's been efficient leading the offense and made plays when he's needed to make them.

Bottom Line: Fitzpatrick is an inconsistent quarterback who is currently on a hot streak, which makes him very dangerous.