The Bills didn’t fire G.M. Doug Whaley. But it’s hard to know what kind of a commitment they’ve made to him.
The team announced that Whaley, who had been signed through 2016, signed a contract extension on Sunday. But the team has provided no specific about the terms of the deal.
“We are pleased to announce a multi-year contract extension with our General Manager Doug Whaley,” owner Terry Pegula said. “Doug has demonstrated an excellent eye for talent and has been an asset to the organization on many levels. I look forward to working closely with Doug and coach [Rex] Ryan for many years to come.”
For Pegula, “many years” could be one year, if a recent report from the Buffalo News is accurate regarding the playoffs-or-bust ultimatum given to Whaley and Ryan. Without knowing the number of years covered by Whaley’s extension and, more importantly, the extent to which it’s guaranteed, it’s impossible to know whether Pegula has structured the deal to make it easy to move on after 2016.
So Whaley has job security. Unless he doesn’t. More importantly for the Bills, an impression of continuity has been created for the coming year, regardless of whether the Bills will be deciding to make major changes if a playoff drought that dates to 1999 continues into 2017.
And that may not be bad news for Bills fans. If Whaley and Ryan have jointly been put on notice that they’re in danger of losing their jobs after next season, they have no choice but to work together to help each other, since there’s no way either guy can individually help himself.