ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) -Marv Levy stepped down as the Buffalo Bills general manager Monday, confident he has the team headed in the right direction despite a second consecutive 7-9 finish.
``It has been an experience that I have enjoyed immensely,'' Levy said in a statement released by the Bills. ``Despite an unprecedented number of season-ending injuries, Dick Jauron, his coaching staff and an admirable core of high-character players are heading in the right direction.''
``If my contributions to their efforts have been meaningful, I then take my leave from One Bills Drive, thankful and gratified,'' said Levy, who had a two-year contract.
The announcement came hours after the 82-year-old Hall of Fame coach opened the Buffalo's final team meeting by informing the players of his decision to move on.
The Bills failed to make the playoffs for an eighth straight year, the longest drought in franchise history, losing Sunday to Philadelphia, 17-9.
Levy, who had the option to renew his contract, informed the Bills of his desire to move on in a meeting with team owner Ralph Wilson last week.
``I will always be grateful for his service,'' Wilson said. ``When we needed new focus and direction, Marv improved our organization's morale, attitude and environment: All of that, plus the stability we needed to move forward.''

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