He was the last of Buffalo’s draft class that had yet to sign his rookie contract. On Friday, just a day after the team completed their mandatory minicamp, EJ Manuel signed with the Bills.

“It’s a great feeling and I’m excited to be truly part of the team now,” Manuel told Buffalobills.com. “I had no doubt at all. I knew I was going to be here and it was going to be done before training camp. I’m just glad it was done earlier instead of later.”

Bills GM Doug Whaley was understandably encouraged knowing he’ll have his entire draft class set to go when the team reports to training camp on July 28th, especially his top draft choice, who could prove to be instrumental in the team’s fortunes in 2013.

“It’s a great feeling, especially with everything wrapping up with minicamp,” said Whaley. “Going into the so called offseason it’s a settling feeling to know that we don’t have to worry about him being ready. Once it’s reporting date it’s full go.”

Manuel is part of a two-man competition for the starting quarterback job with veteran Kevin Kolb. Kolb was the first quarterback through in the rotation during the team’s three-day minicamp, but the reps between the two were split pretty evenly.

Through the course of the spring Manuel has tried to think less about the competition and more about his assignments, his execution and his improvement.