Rotoworld’s fourth annual ranking of NFL general managers was released earlier this week and most Buffalo Bills fans were not surprised to find their very own Doug Whaley at the very bottom of the list. Among the 29 GMs returning from last season, Whaley ranked dead last followed by Les Snead of the Los Angeles Rams, and Mike Maccagnan of the New York Jets.
Ranking and evaluating the league's general managers, including this year's three new hires. https://t.co/03ZTMrqv7F
— Patrick Daugherty (@RotoPat) April 19, 2017
Personnel issues with Whaley have been well-documented since he took over as general manager back in 2013. There was Doug Marrone essentially walking out on the team after the 2014 season. That was followed by Rex Ryan’s short reign in Buffalo and there were even reports that Whaley and new head coach Sean McDermott were already struggling to see eye-to-eye.
There is one area of Whaley’s expertise that Buffalo has benefitted from throughout his four-year tenure with the team: Finding talent via free agency and trades. Tyrod Taylor, LeSean McCoy, Lorenzo Alexander, Zach Brown, and Kiko Alonso were worth every penny Buffalo shelled out for them. Finding talent in the draft, on the other hand, has not been one of his strong suits.
Whaley was promoted to GM just before the 2013 Draft and his first decision in the new role was to draft E.J. Manuel with the No. 16 overall pick. Despite injuries, Sammy Watkins turned out to be a solid pick at No. 4 in 2014, but as Rotoworld’s Patrick Daugherty points out that decision “was made only after a questionable trade up in the deepest receiver class of all time.”
Should teams use a top 10 #NFLDraft pick on a QB?
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) April 19, 2017
Now it’s being reported that Whaley is seriously considering taking a quarterback with the No. 10 overall pick in this year’s draft after restructuring Taylor’s contract early this offseason. Although Buffalo just signed Whaley to a contract extension back in January 2016, Daugherty referenced The Buffalo News’ belief that it’s “only a matter of time” until Whaley is shown the door.
One thing’s for certain: Buffalo’s 2017 Draft class and the team’s performance this upcoming season will have a major impact on Whaley’s future with the Bills.
Stay tuned to End Zone Score for more on Buffalo’s offseason.