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Buddy Nix out as Bills' GM

Buffalo Bills defensive end Mario Williams looks on

Buffalo Bills defensive end Mario Williams looks on during a timeout in a game against the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale, Ariz. (Oct. 14, 2012) Credit: AP

Buddy Nix has stepped down as the Bills’ general manager. The team made the announcement early this afternoon, this just weeks after team president Russ Brandon said Nix, 73, would remain as the Bills’ GM for “a long time.”

The Bills recently promoted Dough Whaley to assistant general manager, but it’s uncertain if he will be named to succeed Nix or whether the team will conduct a broader search.

“This is a thing that once we started this three and a half years ago, you know it is coming,” Nix said at a news conference. “It is coming for all of you guys if you are fortunate enough to stay in what you are doing. With me, being around as I had it was coming quicker. The best time [to step down] is before we start the process for next year.”

Nix will remain with the organization in a consulting role.

The  Bills recently made several key decisions regarding the future of the franchise, starting with the hiring of new head coach Doug Marrone, the former Syracuse head coach. The Bills also drafted Florida State quarterback E.J. Manuel in the first round of last month’s draft.

“I think we have a good young roster, an excellent head coach with a good staff, and it's time to let someone else handle these responsibilities and move forward together,” Nix said. “Timing is the main thing, but there are other benefits as well. This job is very demanding with a 24-7 schedule of responsibilities. This new position will enable me to spend more time with my family. I'm fortunate to step away from the job and still remain a part of the team.”

Among Nix’s other key decisions in recent years: signing free agent defensive end Mario Williams to a $100 million contract last year, drafting first-round running back C.J. Spiller and first-round defensive tackle Marcell Dareus.

“I feel strongly that the team is on the right course for success,” Nix said. “We have some excellent talent on our team and Coach Marrone and his staff are doing a terrific job in leading and teaching the players we have on our roster.”

Team president Russ Brandon said the team would soon begin the process of naming a successor.

“We have a plan and we are going to execute that plan,” he said. “When I am ready to address the other situation at some point, we will all be sitting here again together and we’ll go through that process. I won’t go through that today or at any time in the near future. We have a plan in everything we do.”

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