Tarvaris Jackson not only couldn’t get on the field for the Buffalo Bills last year, he couldn’t get a jersey to wear on game days.

New coach Doug Marrone, however, wants Jackson to compete with Ryan Fitzpatrick for the starting quarterback job.

The Bills re-signed Jackson to a one-year contract Thursday, and Marrone delivered his first insightful comment about how he intends to approach the Bills’ most important position.

“I spoke with Ryan and Tarvaris and told them we will have an open competition at the quarterback position, similar to what we will do at all positions on our team heading into our offseason work,” Marrone said in a statement distributed by the team. “I believe that our players will embrace this challenge. We are looking forward to working with our players as we prepare for the 2013 season.”

Jackson, a healthy scratch for all 16 games last season, merely wanted the opportunity to show what he could do.

“Coming from my situation last year and not playing at all,” Jackson said on a conference call, “getting a chance to compete is very important, it’s about all you can ask for.

“It’s going to be an open competition. Understanding how the NFL works, I know that whenever a new coach comes there’s going to be a lot of positions that’s up for competition.”

The Bills ended 2012 with only one quarterback under contract. The incumbent, Ryan Fitzpatrick, hasn’t had an honest competition since he replaced Trent Edwards in September 2010.

Fitzpatrick won’t be insulated anymore.