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AFC East Report: Buffalo Bills hire a new general manager

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Doug Whaley’s successor has been found.

It was a surprising move, not because it happened – the writing was already on the wall – but because of the timing: Only one day after the 2017 NFL draft ended, the Buffalo Bills parted ways with general manager Doug Whaley.

Yesterday, the New England Patriots’ AFC East rival announced that the void atop the team’s front office has been filled:

We have our GM. Brandon Beane has been named the General Manager of the Buffalo Bills!

Beane started his career in pro football with the Carolina Panthers. After serving several roles in the personnel and football operations departments, he became the team’s director of football operations in 2008. Beane served in this capacity until 2014 – including a half-year stint as interim general manager –, when he was promoted to assistant GM.

After two seasons at the job, the 40-year old now takes his next career step by becoming the Bills’ seventh general manager this millennium. In Buffalo, Beane will have a familiar face leading the coaching staff: Former Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott, who was hired as head coach in January. But while there is a preexisting chemistry with his coach, Beane has his work cut out for him.

Buffalo, despite a good draft, still lacks depth and talent on both sides of the ball; particularly at pass catcher and in the secondary. Furthermore, the team has let go most of its front office and scouting staff meaning that Beane has to start from scratch. Given the Bills’ past success, however, this might actually be a net positive.