Buffalo Bills cut ties with interception-prone QB Nathan Peterman

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Buffalo Bills cut ties with interception-prone QB Nathan Peterman
9:18 PM ET

  • Mike RodakESPN Staff Writer

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    • Previously covered the Patriots for ESPNBoston.com
    • Providence College graduate

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — The Buffalo Bills waived Nathan Peterman on Monday, ending the tenure of the team’s 2017 fifth-round pick who became known for his historically high rate of interceptions.

The move came after the Bills decided to start Matt Barkley over Peterman in Sunday’s 41-10 win over the New York Jets. Barkley, whom the team signed Oct. 31, completed 15 of 25 passes for 232 yards and two touchdowns.

Peterman, 24, appeared in eight games in his two seasons in Buffalo and made four starts. On 130 career regular-season pass attempts, Peterman has thrown three touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He also threw an interception on one of his three pass attempts in last season’s AFC wild-card playoff loss.

Among all NFL quarterbacks since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger with as many pass attempts, Peterman’s interception rate of 9.23 percent is the third-highest, behind those of Kim McQuilken (10.7) and Don Horn (9.34). Peterman’s 32.5 passer rating is the third-lowest among quarterbacks with at least 130 pass attempts since the merger, behind those of McQuilken (17.9) and Scott Bull (24.8).

Peterman spent last season as Tyrod Taylor’s backup before being named the starter for a Nov. 19 game at the Los Angeles Chargers. Peterman threw five interceptions, becoming the first quarterback since the AFL-NFL merger to be picked off five times in a first half, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Taylor replaced him at halftime.

AJ McCarron and rookie first-round pick Josh Allen. McDermott expressed optimism in Peterman after he completed 80 percent of his passes in the preseason for three touchdowns and one interception.

In a Week 1 trip to Baltimore, Peterman completed five of 18 passes for 24 yards and two interceptions before McDermott benched him for Allen in the third quarter of what became a 47-3 loss to the Ravens.

When Allen injured his elbow during an Oct. 14 game at Houston, Peterman replaced him and threw the go-ahead touchdown pass. He later threw two interceptions, including one the Texans returned for the game-winning touchdown.

Peterman’s final appearance for Buffalo came Nov. 4, when he threw three picks in a 41-9 loss to the Chicago Bears. Peterman completed 31 passes for 188 yards, the fewest on that many completions in a game by any NFL quarterback since at least 1950.

Despite opting for Barkley over Peterman in Sunday’s game at the Jets, McDermott continued to stand by Peterman earlier Monday.

“I’m still confident in Nate,” he said.

Without Peterman, the Bills will enter their bye week with Allen, Barkley and Derek Anderson as the three quarterbacks on their 53-man roster. McDermott said Allen will start when Buffalo hosts the Jacksonville Jaguars on Nov. 25.

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