Bills plan to give new head coach more power within organziation

The Buffalo Bills are planning to give their new head coach more power within the organization, sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter.

The Bills, who finished the season at 7-9, are seeking a replacement for Rex Ryan, who was fired on Dec. 27 after less than two seasons as Buffalo's coach.

Ryan reported directly to Bills owner Terry Pegula but only had power over the 46-man game day roster. General manager Doug Whaley retained control of the 53-man roster.

Pegula told The Associated Press on Monday that he made "an executive decision" to fire Ryan, affirming comments made earlier in the day by Whaley.

Whaley had denied having involvement in Ryan's firing, saying that Ryan asked to speak privately with Pegula at the end of their weekly conference call. Pegula informed Ryan during that private conversation that he would not return beyond this season, and Ryan recommended that Anthony Lynn take over as the Bills' interim coach for Week 17.

The Bills formally interviewed Lynn for the full-time head coaching job on Thursday. They also interviewed Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin on Saturday and plan to interview Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard on Sunday.

Buffalo also has reached out to Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich, a former quarterback for the Bills.

Though Pegula was planning to wait until after the season to evaluate Ryan's job, he said he probably would've come to the same conclusion.

Pegula said he based his decision on his own observations, input he has received from his front-office staff over the course of the season and on previous discussions he had with Ryan regarding the team's struggles.

"[Whaley] had input on the basis of conversations throughout the year, what the problems were,'' Pegula said. "But did Doug ever say, 'Are we firing our coach, are we keeping our coach?' We never had that conversation. I took it upon myself to tell Rex on the basis of conversations about the games and the aftermath of certain games that, hey, things aren't going well."

Information from ESPN Bills reporter Mike Rodak and The Associated Press was used in this report.