NFL Franchise Notes: Bills President Denies Reports GM Nix On His Way Out
In Buffalo, Tim Graham cited sources as saying that this NFL Draft was Bills GM Buddy Nix’ “last,” and he will “step aside for heir apparent” Assistant GM & Player Personnel Dir Doug Whaley. But there was “no indication a transfer of power would happen any time soon” after the Bills made their eighth and final draft choice Saturday night. Bills President & CEO Russ Brandon said, “There’s a lot of speculation for whatever reason related to that. Buddy Nix is our general manager and will be for a long time. Doug is a vital cog to the process, but when it comes to football decisions in this organization, one person and one person only makes those decisions, and that’s Buddy Nix” (BUFFALO NEWS, 4/28).
BIRD ON A WIRE: SI.com’s Peter King cites a source as saying that the Cardinals “will randomly drug test” third-round draft pick S Tyrann Mathieu “as often as weekly after he signs his NFL contract.” Mathieu's contract reportedly “will not include any guaranteed money.” Rather, he will “earn bonus money in the form of roster bonuses, to ensure that the club is protected in the event that he lapses and the team chooses to cut him.” Cardinals GM Steve Keim said that he is “counting on one of the Cardinals' cornerstone players, Patrick Peterson, to be a mentor to Mathieu.” The two were teammates at LSU in ‘10 (SI.com, 4/29).
MR. BROWN: In Cleveland, Bud Shaw writes Browns CEO Joe Banner “upped the ante” for the NFL Draft, and is “betting big on himself.” There is “something to admire in his self-assuredness.” But fans would “feel better if the fingerprints on talent procurement" during his time as Eagles President were “more easily traceable to him," as opposed to former Eagles coach Andy Reid (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 4/29).
FLY LIKE AN EAGLE: In Philadelphia, Paul Domowitch writes the first NFL Draft for Eagles GM Howie Roseman and coach Chip Kelly was “nothing like that '89 slugfest" between former Giants coach Bill Parcells and GM George Young that saw the two strongly disagree with each other over a potential selection. While there “certainly were exchanges of opinions between the Eagles' general manager and head coach in the weeks and months leading up to the draft as they set up their board, they were in perfect sync during the seven-round selection process” (PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS, 4/29).
CHARGING AHEAD: In San Diego, Kevin Acee wrote while Chargers fans “won’t know for a while exactly how much the Chargers gained" during the NFL Draft, the "excitement is tangible and the direction deliberate.” The Chargers’ new regime "will not be held down by the decisions of the old regime” (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 4/28).