The Buffalo Bills have missed the playoffs for the 17th consecutive year in the second year of head coach Rex Ryan. There were signs of hope, but the Bills were ultimately unable to string together enough wins to make the playoffs in 2017. Now Buffalo were left with a choice: Keep Rex Ryan or fire him and look to hire a replacement. The Bills have fired Rex Ryan and will now be looking for a new man to lead the team next season. Here are a few options the Buffalo Bills are likely considering.

1. Anthony Lynn

The Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator makes sense for the Bills for obvious reasons. He’s familiar with everyone on the team and headed an offensive unit that led the NFL in rushing. Lynn would also be familiar with the player dynamics in Buffalo, even with 30 players bolting for free agency at the end of the year. Lynn is also drawing interest from several other NFL teams so the Bills would likely have to fight to get him. He'll have his first audition in a week 17 road game against the woeful New York Jets.

2. Gus Bradley

The former Seahawks defensive coordinator was fired from his Jaguars head coaching job after going 2-12 with a promising roster filled with young talent. Why would the Bills want a guy who just got fired? The Jaguars defense, which was terrible last season, improved dramatically under Bradley this year. The main problem was the Jaguars offense, which routinely turned the ball over and left the team in bad positions.

The Bills have turned the ball over very little in 2016 and could use more help on the defensive end, where they have been awful this season. Bradley feels like a perfect fit for this team as long as he gets some help on the offensive end.

3. Tom Coughlin.

After Rex Ryan, Bills brass will likely look to hire someone with a tough attitude who isn’t willing to put up with me-first players. Coughlin is the man for that job.

The former Giants head coach won two Super Bowls behind Eli Manning with that attitude and would bring far more discipline to a Bills team that is sorely lacking it right now. Still, it’s hard to trust a coach like Coughlin whose main calling card is his toughness. The Bills are probably going to look for a younger coach who is rising up the ranks instead.

4. Kyle Shanahan.

The Falcons offensive coordinator has helped the Falcons become a more balanced team.

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Devonta Freeman and Matt Ryan have teamed up to form one of the most lethal offensive combinations in the NFL. The Falcons have won the division and will look to make some noise in the playoffs. After that, Shanahan will be one of the most sought after coordinators in the league. If he does come to the Bills, he will have to improve the defense, something that he hasn't yet proved he is capable of doing at this stage in his career.

5. Matt Patricia.

The Patriots defensive coordinator is one of the more confusing candidates on this list. Prior to his stint with the Patriots, Patricia worked in aeronautical engineering. Now he is at the helm of one of the better defenses in the NFL. The Bills could use a defensive minded head coach to pair with the offensive mind of Anthony Lynn, and any secrets Patricia knows about the Patriots could prove beneficial as well. Belichick disciples don't usually perform well after leaving, but Patricia's unique background and track record of success could make him the exception.

The Buffalo Bills have a difficult coaching search ahead of them and hopefully their next head coach will be the one to break the 17 year playoff drought that the franchise has been mired in.

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