It had been 10 years since the Buffalo Bills last tasted the sweet nectar of the playoffs when they hired Doug Whaley. The Bills were searching for someone to come in and help turn things around. A new eye for talent one would say they needed.
“Who better then Doug Whaley?” Pittsburgh fans would say. They had been reaping the benefits of his eye for talent for over a decade, producing two Super Bowl Champions and drafting players like Plaxico Burress, Santonio Holmes, Troy Polamalu, Ike Taylor, Ben Roethlisberger, Lawrence Timmons, and Mike Wallace – first round picks that have or had delivered for years.
It may have taken a few years for Buddy Nix to step down and for Doug Whaley to take over completely, but you could see draft by draft the Bills got a little better each year. I’m not just talking about the obvious first round great like Dareus or the mis-drafted E.J. Manuel. Yes, I’m saying E.J. Manuel wasn’t a bad pick. It was just the wrong round to pick up an unproven college QB. I’m talking about the second thru seventh rounds. Players like Preston Brown(3rd), Seantrel Henderson(7th), Chris Gragg(7th), or Nigel Bradham(4th) and later round draft picks that have become starters or damn good players. There are a few more in the latest 2015 draft class like John Miller(3rd) and Karlos Williams (5) that could be stars in Buffalo in the coming future.
Something changed in 2015 for Whaley. He was given the gift of the Pegulas, Rex Ryan, and new coaching staff. He also developed some testicular fortitude (balls) in pulling off the moves he did. I’m not just talking about the trades either. The cuts are almost as important to me as the trades, signings, or draft picks. I don’t care how good of an armchair quarterback anyone of you are. No one predicted these moves. It was unfathominable. Trading for McCoy was the biggest shock of most Bills fans ( aside from signing Super Mario). Adressing the guard position off the bat before free agency (addressing just may be an understatement)! Richie Incognito is going to be the unsung hero of the 2015 Bills. The value of that signing alone should make Bills fans jump for joy. Then adding others like Harvin and Clay. The resigning and extending of Hughes, Dareus and Robey are big moves. Not letting Dareus get to free agency might keep Buffalo in the playoffs for a few years to come.
Classifying the hiring of Rex Ryan and Company is a hard one. This is because it was mainly the Pegulas’ decision. Doug Whaley had been there to help and guide them, telling them to keep an open mind till the right guy came around. So I have to give him a bit of credit. Because good coaching has been what Buffalo has lacked for years at the Head Coaching spot and Offensive Coordinator. Our defense has been solid for many of these drought years. We just lacked the right people on offense and the personality at head coach. It is for certain that the Bills and Whaley addressed that this year.
So to all the Bills fans calling for Doug Whaley’s job. You should probably take a look at the past three drafts, hell even the past six drafts. Then look at the roster from 2009 and 2015. You can see how much better we are now. It might truly blow your mind and make you give thanks if you include the coaching staff as well.
So Bills fans,this is a time for toasting Blue Lights to the new era of Buffalo Bills football. Lets Go Buffalo!!!