PITONIAK: Bills would do well to sack Whaley, hire Coughlin

NFL Buffalo

                For 17 consecutive seasons, the Bills have been out to prove Einstein’s theory – not of relativity, but of insanity. They keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result.
                Tuesday they sacked Rex Ryan and elevated offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn to interim head coach. And while I applaud this move, it came much too late. It should have been made months ago when it became apparent that Rex proved to be what I said he would be when hired – a blustery, at times entertaining, gasbag who had no business being a head coach.
                While the departure of Rex and his twin brother Rob was welcome news, it didn’t go far enough. The Ryan boys were a big part of the problem, but more needed to be done. An organizational purge was needed.
                Instead, in true Bills head-scratching  fashion, General Manager Doug Whaley was not only retained, but given the power to lead the search for a new coach. If Terry and Kim Pegula were intent on finally fixing the problems that have led to the longest active playoff famine in sports, they would have cleaned out the front office, too. Instead, they’re entrusting Whaley, who whiffed on two previously coaching hires and the drafting of quarterback EJ Manuel, and overspent for oft-injured wide receiver Sammy Watkins.
                Since September, I’ve been campaigning for Tom Coughlin to become the coach/football czar of the bungling Bills. He has two Super Bowl rings – both against Buffalo nemisis Bill Belichick, I might add – and also has experience building a team from nothing, which he did with the Jacksonville Jaguars expansion franchise in the 1990s. Coughlin would bring things sorely lacking from this organization, including discipline and a vision for success. It doesn’t hurt that he has Upstate roots, hailing from Waterloo and playing and coaching at Syracuse University, and also coaching at RIT.
                So, the Pegulas, who’ve reportedly had several talks with Coughlin, still have time to get this right. I just hope that if they are able to land Coughlin that they give him – and not Whaley – the final say on football matters. In other words, if you are going to keep Whaley, who’s best quality may be self-preservation, make him GM in name only; make him what he truly is – a scout..
                If they aren’t willing to do that, they’ll be in the same place two years from now, dealing with yet another coaching search and more insanity.

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