TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The second highest drafted quarterback from Florida State became the first Seminole selected in the 2013 NFL Draft. EJ Manuel was selected with the 16th pick in the first round by the Buffalo Bills Thursday night.
“I’m extremely happy for EJ,” FSU head coach Jimbo Fisher said. “He’s a tremendous young man who has been a great representative of Florida State University. He’s worked extremely hard to get to this goal. He’s one of the main reasons that this program has been able to get back to national prominence because of the sacrifices he’s made through his career as well as his development as a player. I’m extremely happy for him and his family. This couldn’t have happen to a better group of people.”
Manuel is the third highest offensive player to go for the Noles since quarterback Christian Ponder in 2011 and offensive lineman Alex Barron in 2005. Ponder became the highest drafted quarterback in FSU history when he was taken with the 12th pick by the Minnesota Vikings in the 2011 NFL Draft. Before Ponder, Gary Huff was the highest drafted FSU QB as the 33rd overall pick in the 1967 draft.
Manuel became the eighth FSU player ever taken by the Bills. The Bills took two Seminoles in the 2012 NFL Draft: Nigel Bradham (4th Round) and Zebrie Sanders (5th Round).
Manuel finished his career ranking as one of the most productive at his position in Florida State history. He led the Seminoles to a 25-6 record as a starter - the third-most wins in program history - and became just the second quarterback in FBS history to win four straight bowl games, joining former West Virginia QB Pat White. He also went 16-3 in his career against ACC opponents. FSU's all-time leader in completion percentage (66.9), which ties for second in ACC history, Manuel ranks among top five Seminole quarterbacks all-time for passing yards (7,736, 3rd), total offense (8,563, 3rd), completions (600, 4th) and attempts (897, 5th), despite only two seasons as the full-time starter. He also tied for seventh all-time with 47 career TD passes and tied for ninth all-time with five 300-yard passing games. He enjoyed his most productive season in 2012, completing 263-of-387 attempts for 3,392 yards and 23 touchdowns with only 10 interceptions.
Manuel served as an integral part of the 2012 FSU offense which will go down in FSU history as the most productive ever racking up a school record 6,591 yards which surpassed the 2000 team for the most yards. He capped off his career leading FSU to 534 yards of total offense which was the sixth game of over 500 yards of total offense in 2012. He ranked second in the ACC and 14th nationally in passing efficiency (156.0) in 2012 and his career total of 150.4 ranks second all-time in the ACC. Manuel became the first Seminole quarterback since Charlie Ward to pass for 300 yards and rush for 100 with 380 and 102, respectively, in FSU's 49-37 win over No. 10 Clemson which earned him his first of two ACC Player of the Week honors. Manuel eclipsed 200 passing yards eight times in 2012 to go along with seven multiple TD passing games. He contributed 310 rushing yards and four TD's to the Seminoles' running game, which ranked second in the ACC averaging 205.9 yards per game. He was named one of four team captains and the most valuable player on offense for the second straight year at the team's annual banquet.