Bills fire GM Whaley, scouting staff 1 day after NFL draft
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) Whether it was sitting together in a golf cart watching training camp or sharing dinner and drinks at a nearby restaurant, Bills owner Terry Pegula and general manager Doug Whaley were nearly inseparable last summer.
Some nine months later, their professional relationship soured to such an extent that Pegula fired Whaley and his entire scouting staff on Sunday.
The decision was reached shortly after the two met at 8 a.m., a day following the NFL draft, and it completed a front-office purge that began with coach Rex Ryan being fired in the final week of last season.
Pegula’s voice cracked briefly with emotion when discussing the latest move, saying: ”There were a few tears around the building, to be honest with you. He’s a good guy.”
But not good enough to keep his job, with Pegula saying he reached the conclusion following a lengthy offseason review.
It’s a shake-up that further solidifies the influence rookie coach Sean McDermott has gained in the three months since being hired. The 42-year-old detail-oriented defensive specialist has become the voice of the franchise in discussing all team-related topics, including free agency and the draft.
Pegula said the timing coincided with the end of the draft, but he declined to detail the reasons why the overhaul was necessary. Nor would Pegula explain his reasoning for showing Whaley the door while praising the collaborative approach that took place between the GM and McDermott in the draft room.
”We have certain aspects we need…