Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

31 Dec 2012

Bills Fire Chan Gailey

Link to come. We look forward to the Bills hiring another head coach that nobody else was thinking about hiring. Perhaps they would like to completely turn things over, and also fire Buddy Nix and replace him with a GM that nobody else was thinking about hiring?

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 31 Dec 2012

18 comments, Last at 04 Jan 2013, 12:36am by Duke


by RickD :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 12:15pm

Let's hope the Bills don't hire somebody who understands just how good CJ Spiller is. I look forward to another HC who limits his touches.

by jackiel :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 2:01pm

If I'm a RB needy team, I offer Buffalo a 2nd round pick for Spiller pronto.

by drobviousso :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 2:12pm

How about they hire Todd Hailey from Pittsburgh, then you can have the best of both worlds. A HC who does know how good he is, and who will limit his touches.

by Gus (not verified) :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 7:27pm

Seconded. The guy is a monster.

by Dice :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 12:15pm

I know he didn't use Megatron enough in college, but I thought Gailey's ability to work with the players he has is pretty good. Production out of Thigpen and getting the most out of Ryan Fitzpatrick(who I think can be a useful QB) rather than putting in his system, regardless of the talent involved, struck me as unusual in the NFL. Sticking with Fred jackson too long this season, through all his injuries, and not trusting in Spiller was pretty bad though.

by Hurt Bones :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 12:18pm

"and replace him with a GM that nobody else was thinking about hiring?"

Who in turn hires a head coach that nobody else was thinking of hiring.

by Ryan D. :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 12:28pm

Marty Hurney hires Norv Turner?

by DisplacedPackerFan :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 12:38pm

Nah Turner is too well know and Hurney is a former GM.

How about Tag Ribary hiring Darren Perry. Though actually both of those guys are probably on the radars of people in the game, just not the media and fans.

by Hurt Bones :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 1:12pm

Turner fits well. It's not a question of name recognition, but whether anyone else was thinking of hiring him. Hiring a 60 year old three time loser as your head coach seems right up Ralph Wilson's alley.

by Ryan D. :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 4:08pm


Yes, but Hurney was an awful GM, and the only qualifier was that it needed to be a GM that "no one else would hire," which seems very plausible following Hurney's stint in Carolina. How a journalist/publicist/PR guy got a job as a professional GM is beyond my comprehension. Hiring this guy to be an NFL GM again now could only be explained by logic like "God hates Cleveland/KC/Buffalo."

by mehlLageman56 (not verified) :: Mon, 12/31/2012 - 2:10pm

I don't really agree with your assessment of Buddy Nix. He was the Chargers personell guy under AJ Smith, and to be honest I think the Bills have the second most talent right now in the division. You know who would work great for this team: Lovie Smith.

by Mash Wilson :: Tue, 01/01/2013 - 9:15am

There's a class of coaches who aren't necessarily Hall of Fame coaches, but who are very good at taking over pretty much any sad sack team and immediately getting it to respectable mediocrity. These guys are almost to a man defensive coordinators who are ultra-conservative tacticians. It would include pretty much everyone of note in the Schottenheimer coaching family.

Jeff Fisher would be the most recent notable example; the Rams hired him coming off the worst five-year record in history, and went 7-8-1 his first year with the team. If he stays with the team ten years, then ten years from now the Rams will still be basically a .500ish team or slightly better. Ask Tennessee fans. But his very strong fundamental and defense-minded coaching works wonders for achieving respectability with talent-starved rosters.

I strongly suspect Lovie Smith is in this class of coaches, and therefore would be an excellent hire right now for the Bills or Chiefs.

by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 01/01/2013 - 11:45am

The Bills had their time with Jauron, and just fired Wannstedt. I think they really ought to back off from people who didn't work out for the Bears.

by jds :: Thu, 01/03/2013 - 10:03am

So you are saying you don't favor Mike Martz either.

by Duke :: Fri, 01/04/2013 - 12:36am

I'm guessing, then, that you're not happy about the reports of them talking to Lovie Smith.

by the K :: Tue, 01/01/2013 - 12:08pm

Rooney Rule says they have to interview a minority candidate. I hope it's Lovie. Wouldn't be upset if he became the next HC.

The other thing getting me called nasty names on Bills message boards is hoping they get Alex Smith this offseason. But honestly, can anyone name a better option for them? All we need is a QB to take care of the ball and a coach willing to give Spiller 20+ touches a game.

by Dr. Mooch :: Tue, 01/01/2013 - 1:13pm

It would be really hard to argue against coherently. Smith ranked 15th in DYAR despite attempting only 243 passes. He ranked 10th in DVOA. He ranked first in catch percentage.

He may not be a perfect specimen at QB and he probably got a big numbers boost from the SF system, but after watching Fitz spray balls around all year, someone with a 70% completion percentage is a no-brainer.