The NFL Draft is a little over a day away, but in addition to the anticipation of the Buffalo Bills' first-round pick, now the fans of the franchise will wait to see what happens to the front office once the draft is over.
According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com, the future is not something the scouting staff of the Buffalo Bills wants to particularly look forward to. A league source told Florio that the Bills scouts "are bracing for job changes after the draft," with one member of the team's scouting staff saying, "We are all getting fired next week."
When asked about the report, the Bills gave 7ABC the same statement as was originally given to Florio:
“Right now, our focus is on the preparation for this week’s draft. Like every year, evaluations of our player personnel staff take place following the draft. And this year will be no different.”
As of Wednesday, the team's official website listed 19 different members of the player personnel staff, which includes two pro scouts, two national scouts, and six college area scouts. General manager Doug Whaley was not listed in the report from Florio.
Joe B's Take
A little over 24 hours before the NFL Draft, this is quite the report to come out about the team. And while you never, ever want to hear about people losing their jobs in a house cleaning matter, it's something we probably should have seen coming with the Bills.
The scouting staff has been employed for a long time at One Bills Drive, and while they can't be pinned down as the reason things haven't gone well over the past nearly two decades, the Bills can desire a fresh start in all phases of the organization.
It's something we haven't really seen them do to a large degree, and it would go in line with all the changes we've seen from the Bills even over the last few months since Sean McDermott was hired.
The bigger question in this circles around the future of general manager Doug Whaley.
It continues to appear, almost with every passing day, that head coach Sean McDermott has close to complete control over at One Bills Drive. Whaley didn't want Tyrod Taylor, McDermott did, and Taylor is back. Heck, the Bills haven't even decided on giving Sammy Watkins his fifth-year option yet, which if it were up to Whaley, probably would have been done before now because of how much he invested in Watkins in the first place.
There hasn't been any public unrest from McDermott about the relationship with Whaley, but the big deadline has always been about after the draft for Whaley -- not in January when Rex Ryan was let go.
Why keep everyone on until now?
If you unload the general manager and scouting staff in January, especially after they've just concluded a season's worth of work on all the prospects you're considering for the NFL Draft, your trade secrets are no longer put away with a lock and key. Unfortunately, the more prudent business decision is to let them go just after the draft is over -- especially if there isn't a GM-in-waiting that can keep the whole staff calm in the interim.
While there aren't any reports out there that signal that Whaley will be fired once the draft is over with, it certainly doesn't look promising for the Bills current general manager with a report coming out like this.