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 ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - The Buffalo Bills have promoted Doug Whaley to take over as general manager, replacing Buddy Nix who stepped down earlier this week.
The team announced the move on Thursday and it was not unexpected. Whaley was hired by Nix three years ago and has since been groomed as his successor.
Whaley has played a role in the Bills' offseason overhaul. He was part of the search team that hired coach Doug Marrone in January. And he was part of the scouting process that led to Buffalo selecting Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel in the first round of the draft last month.
From Pittsburgh, Whaley spent 12 seasons working in various capacities as a scout with the Steelers.
Whaley becomes the Bills fifth GM since John Butler was fired during the 2000 season, and takes over a team that's not had a winning season since 2004, and not made the playoffs in 13 seasons - the NFL's longest active playoff drought.

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