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Pegula: Report of McDermott-Whaley rift 'erroneous,' coach & GM 'get along great'

PHOENIX -- Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula Tuesday said there was no truth to a recent CBS report that General Manager Doug Whaley and new coach Sean McDermott weren't getting along and that McDermott wanted to bring in his own people to run the player-personnel department.

"I don't know where that report came from, it's erroneous" Pegula told a group of Western New York reporters covering the NFL meeting here, adding that McDermott and Whaley "get along great" and gave no indication that a change at GM was forthcoming.

"We just spent the afternoon working together, the three of us," Pegula added. "Those guys get along great. They've been making some key decisions and they work well together."

Asked who would make the final call on what the Bills would do with the 10th overall pick in this year's NFL Draft, Pegula said, "It's going to be a group effort."

Regarding the "one-voice" approach the Bills have taken with McDermott serving as that voice, the owner said, "It's a lot simpler to have one spokesperson for the organization, and when we sat in our coaching interviews this last go around, we talked to all of the candidates and one of the things we were interested in and Doug was in those meetings. We wanted a coach that could be the face of our organization and that could step into that role."

Pegula cast one of the 31 votes Monday that approved the Raiders' move from Oakland to Las Vegas. He also voted to approve the moves of the Rams from St. Louis back to Los Angeles last year and the Chargers to L.A. this year.

"It's a difficult issue, because I know that the fans in Buffalo went through some hardship mentally, wondering what was going to happen to their franchise," Pegula said. "But these things happen."

He also addressed:

*A Buffalo News report that he and his wife, Kim, the Bills' co-owner, did not think the time was right for the team to seek public money that would be part of funding by the team and the NFL for a new stadium to replace New Era Field: "The state just got through with a rather expensive renovation of the stadium. I don't think it's our place to make demands and ask for things right now. We have a lease on our stadium until 2023 and we're looking forward to the football season and not talking about stadiums."

*The restructuring of the contract that prompted the Bills to keep quarterback Tyrod Taylor: "That was Doug and Sean working very diligently, digging up everything, directions we could go and what not, and the decision was unanimous that we bring Tyrod back with the new contract. And we're all happy with that."

*What has been the toughest part of owning and NFL team: "I think the hardest part has been our fans not having a winner. It's very difficult. We're not happy with what we've been doing on the field. We need to get better. We're going to work harder and the whole organization is behind that philosophy -- work harder, day-by-day, week-by-week, Sunday-by-Sunday and just try to get better."

Terry Pegula to AP: 'There's no dysfunction' with Bills

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