Feb. 18, 1997 -- It almost hurts to bring up the name.
The Bills were hoping to add a little depth to their quarterback position when they acquired Billy Joe Hobert from the Oakland Raiders for a draft pick. Hobert had played in five games in the previous two seasons for the Raiders. Here's how Vic Carucci described the deal:
The Buffalo Bills today introduced quarterback Billy Joe Hobert as the newest member of their team.
During a news conference at Rich Stadium, the Bills officially announced the acquisition of Hobert from the Oakland Raiders for a third-round pick in April's draft. Hobert, a backup for the Raiders during all of his four NFL seasons, will compete with Todd Collins for the Bills' starting quarterback job.
"I'm very excited about this opportunity," Hobert said. "I really appreciate the Bills giving me this chance. I see this as the start of my career. This will be my fifth year coming up in the league and not one time have I had a legitimate chance of fighting for that starting position.
"That's what I'm looking forward to, the legitimate chance to compete for the No. 1 job."
For his pro career, Hobert, 26, has completed 101 of 184 passes for 1,207 yards and 10 touchdowns, while throwing nine interceptions. He is 0-5 as a starter.
The Bills have been impressed with Hobert since his college career, and continued to track his progress in the NFL.
"He's a quarterback we liked very much when he came out of college," said coach Marv Levy. "With the retirement of Jim Kelly, we felt there were steps we had to take to have a solid corps of quarterbacks in camp."
Sadly, Billy Joe is best remembered now for admitting after a game against New England that he was unprepared to play. The Bills released him as quickly as possible.
--- Budd Bailey