Lockport's John Murphy stepping down as Bills play-by-play broadcaster after 35 years

May 9—John Murphy is looking for what's next.

The longtime Buffalo Bills broadcaster and Lockport native announced in an interview with WBEN radio that he is officially stepping away from his duties as play-by-play man. Murphy spent 35 years broadcasting games for the Bills, 16 as a color analyst, beginning in 1984, and then succeeding Van Miller as the lead announcer in 2002.

"It's hard," Murphy told WBEN. "It wasn't that hard until the last day or two. I've been thinking about all the things I'll miss a great deal. ... I'll miss the people more than anything."

Murphy suffered a stroke in Jan. 1, 2023, and although he sporadically attended practices, he has been away from his duties, with Chris Brown taking over the play-by-play role next to former Bills offensive lineman Eric Wood. After finishing the 2022 season, Brown was given the job for all of last year.

After starting his career with Lockport's WLVL, Murphy became the sports director at WBEN in 1984, a position he held until in 1992. In 1989, Murphy made the jump to television as a sports anchor for WKBW, eventually becoming the sports director for 18 years. He then worked in the same capacity for WIVB until 2012.

From 2012-2020, Murphy hosted "The John Murphy Show," later re-dubbed "One Bills Live," a simulcast on WGR 550 and MSG. Seeking to scale back his duties, Murphy left the Bills full-time and began a weekly podcast with Sullivan's Brewing Company.

He hasn't ruled out being involved in the game day broadcast in another position.

"John's love and enthusiasm for the Bills and Western New York has been evident for the past 30-plus years in the booth. We will all miss his great calls and passion as the play-by-play announcer. We continue to wish he and his family all the best during his recovery and we hope that he can remain a part of our organization in the future," Bills owner Terry Pegula said in a statement.

Murphy released a book in 2023, titled, If These Walls Could Talk: Buffalo Bills: Stories from the Buffalo Bills Sideline, Locker Room, and Press Box.