Dukes of Awesome


Well…
December 17, 2008, 2:54 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

A lot has happened with the Bills since anyone updated this thing, all of which can be neatly summarized:

If you’re still there, please weigh in in the comments on the Jauron question. (i.e., should he be tarred and feathered in Niagara Square, or simply tied to an outbound Amtrak).

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BREAKING – THE FOOTBALL GODS TAKETH, BUT SO SHALL THEY GIVETH

OK, so losing Crowell sucks. But from the Adam Schefter – JASON PETERS IS REPORTING TO ORCHARD PARK:

Even before the games begin, the Buffalo Bills and Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters have their first victory of the season.

Peters informed the Bills on Friday that he plans to end his summer-long holdout and report to the team Saturday, one day before Buffalo opens its season against Seattle. The team already has made the decision that Peters will not play Sunday against Seattle.

But Peters already has applied to the league for reinstatement and the NFL is expected to grant the Bills a two-game roster exemption.

However, Buffalo could opt to activate Peters at any time, and would be expected to do so next week, meaning he would likely be available to play Sept. 14 at Jacksonville.

WOO HOO! The lean LT from the other Queen City will be back on our line all season. He needs a contract. So does Evans. We’ll deal with Crowell’s absence.

As noted, you won’t be able to see Peters Sunday, but – you can check out a special TALLEYWHACKERS liveblog at Buffalo.com during the game (starting at 12:30, and running through the game at least). Evan is hosting it, and encourages you to e-mail camera phone photos of your party, fun at the game, tailgate, whatever to talleywhackers@gmail.com.

See you Sunday.



F*CK TORONTO (title edited due to bruised egos of anonymous)
August 12, 2008, 12:00 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , ,
Its true. (Fuck the Flyers though, too, guy).

It's true. (Fuck the Flyers though, too, guy).

One of the more peculiar things I hear Bills fans saying these days, when it comes to the potential relocation of our beloved team, is that Los Angeles is the worst case scenario, and Toronto wouldn’t be the end of the world. Many people think that, while the Bills absolutely need to stay in Buffalo, if a dreaded move does happen, at least Toronto wouldn’t be that bad. “Well, at least they’d be close by,” they say.

Fuck.

That.

I have two reasons why I oppose a Bills move to Toronto even MORE than one to Los Angeles. The first reason, you’ve probably heard. But read on for the second reason, as I don’t think enough people realize it.

Firstly, I just don’t think there’s any sports osmosis between Buffalo and Toronto. No relatability. Toronto may be close, but it’s a different country, and really, a different world. I just don’t see a dedicated Buffalo fan base for a Toronto NFL team, even if it did just move there from Orchard Park. I mean, we don’t have an NBA team, but how many Raptors fans do you know in Buffalo? We have no MLB team, but I can count the Blue Jays fans I know on one hand. It just doesn’t work. There’s just a big cultural divide, and frankly, we all hate Torontonians, and probably vice-versa. Can you fucking imagine those smug hosers coming down for Sabres-Leafs games and throwing it in our faces that they have our football team? We’d be lucky if there were only a couple homicides in the arena, and if someone didn’t bomb the Peace Bridge. Buffalo and Toronto uniting behind one team? My ass. Also, Toronto would corporatize the Bills to death. Have you ever been to a Leafs game? They literally serve wine and cheese. The tickets are all bought by big Toronto companies. The same thing would happen to their football team. If you’re picturing a big, raucous Ralph with easy tickets a massive tailgate, just relocated an hour or so up the QEW, you’re dreaming. Plus they’d change the name.

But you’ve probably heard that. Here’s the REALLY IMPORTANT reason the Bills can’t move to Toronto:

Right now, the conventional wisdom in town is that we should all be hoping one of the NFL’s troubled teams – in Jacksonville, Minnesota, San Diego, etc – move to Los Angeles before Ralph kicks it, so that at least we’d be left only with the allegedly better option of Toronto. But suppose for a moment that doesn’t happen, and the Bills are bought and packed out to Los Angeles. Yes, we’d have to go through the unimaginably traumatic scenario of the Buffalo Bills actually packing up vans, dumping their jerseys and helmets in the trash, and getting on a plane for California, never to return. The whole city would collectively sob for weeks. But – those other troubled teams would still be looking for homes. Just as Cleveland did, we could capitalize on the nationwide sympathy that poor Buffalo had their Bills ripped from them, and make a serious bid if and when another struggling team came up for sale. If we can get a great ownership group together, we could also offer an already built stadium, proven fan base, etc. I’m not saying it would be easy, but we would have a fighting chance of restoring the NFL to Buffalo.

But that ONLY works if the Bills are in Los Angeles. If the Bills move to Tornoto, there is absolutely, positively zero chance the NFL ever approves another team for Buffalo. Zip, zilch, nadda, no way. That’s a huge market overlap.

If the Bills move to Toronto, the city of Buffalo can forever kiss the NFL goodbye. With the team in Los Angeles, we live to fight another day. I’ll take that chance over vying for the Brie-Merlot season ticket combo up north.



Heckuva Job, Indiana Engineers!

The media got a tour of the brand-spankin’ new Lucas Stadium in Indianapolis, official home of the Colts.

Reviews were positive, but there was one small problem…

There are a few explanations for this, uh, interesting design, which the Indy Star tells us actually occurs in all four corners of the stadium:

  • In Indiana, this is where the non-believers sit
  • Hyper-patriotic engineer decided this was a good a place as any to have a 9/11 memorial
  • Those huge speakers that pump in crowd noise have to be held up somehow
  • Archie Manning’s new seats, to prevent camera cutaways that occur roughly 12 times per minute

Add your own in the comments.



R.I.P Mitch Frerotte
June 12, 2008, 4:32 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Mitch Frerotte has passed away at age 43, the first member of the Bills Super Bowl team(s) to die. Are we that old?

Frerotte, aside from being a good player, was quite a character.

Former Buffalo News sports reporter Vic Carucci, in a 1990 profile on the colorful Frerotte, wrote that on game day, Frerotte looked like a professional wrestler who had gotten lost on his way to the arena.

“There’s the long blond hair,” he wrote. “There’s the goatee. And, of course, there’s the paint. The black paint that goes around his right eye, juts down his cheek and forms a point just above his jaw…”

“Frerotte considers it war paint,” he added.

In that profile, Frerotte explained the on-field image he had cultivated.

“In this game, I can be as free-spirited as I want,” Frerotte said. “Guys who are doctors, lawyers, businessmen, whatever, they can’t be that way. They have to have a certain kind of image. But in football, it’s a matter of who’s sicker out on the field on Sunday. And I have the opportunity to just be crazy and nuts.

“I’ll worry about having a straighter image when I get a real job,” he added.

Rest in peace.



Message Board Meathead, 5/2/08

We love Bills fans of any kind, but reading the team message boards, it’s clear that a few of them have spent a little too much time in Drive 5 standing by the exhaust pipe of their running RV. Perhaps while consuming a case or two of Genny Light.

For fun, we’ll occasionally feature one of these knuckleheads and expose them to collective ridicule and shame. Today’s Bills super-fan is actually a common one on the boards – the we-focused-too-much-on-special-teams-in-the-draft guy. From BB.com boards’ buffaloboy:

I’d say C+. We neeeded help on offense a lot more than we needed help on defense (especially after the moves we made in free agency). Also looked like WAY too much emphasis on special teams – yeah, ST is important (OK, real important), but it’s not 2/3 of your team

See, when a linebacker or running back or wide receiver is taken in late rounds, they ususally aren’t that talented. They’re taken in the hope that, someday, they may be developed into a starting-caliber linebacker, running back, or wide receiver, but in the meantime, they just serve as a body on special teams until this happens. (See DiGiorgio, John or Stamer, Josh).

This Einstein apparently believes that there were actually a ton of Poslusznys sitting around in the 6th round, but One Bills Drive just decided to go half-cocked and grab one of those special-teamers instead, because these front-office professionals just haven’t discovered buffaloboy’s brilliant draft strategy of drafting Pro-Bowl starters in rounds 1-7.

So good sir, you have the honor of the first Buffalo Bills Message Board Meathead of this blog. We raise our Genny Lights to you.



Master Debaters: How much are the Bills’ Toronto games really worth?

errantremark: Did you see how much the bills are making on the TO games? $78 million. I can’t fault them playing up there, even with controversy.

realwiley: No, it was never a bad idea, per se.

errantremark: It does make one realize just how enticing it is to move them.

realwiley: Right. But we knew that. I mean, I think the bottom line is, they won’t move when Ralph is alive. When he dies, his family will sell the team, guaranteed. The games they’ve scheduled are all mildly beside the point.

errantremark: Yeah, but I didn’t realize just how much money that is. I mean, that’s only for one game a year for 5 years. Over a whole season, I know it evens out a little, but wow. Once Ralph passes, who knows? God I hope Jim Kelly, Golisano, et al can keep the team here.

realwiley: Me too. The key is, Ralph needs to outlive an LA move.

It hasn’t gotten much attention, but this guy in LA is building a $800 million stadium that’s completely privately financed. Goddell was asked about it at the draft, he said the NFL will not expand, so a team’s probably going to move to LA. The question is, will Minny or Jax or San Diego or whoever do it, before the Bills go up for sale then I think we’re looking at Toronto, worst-case.

errantremark: I think Jax would be the most likely of those two – and it would make the most sense. They’re the only team that brings in LESS than the Bills do. [ed. Note: I couldn’t find the most recent rankings but in 2004 the 9-7 Bills ranked 21 in yearly revenues, topping even the big market rival Jets.]

realwiley: Yeah, the NFL might like Jax too, if only because it minimizes a fan riot. You don’t want a replay of Cleveland in ‘95.

errantremark: Seriously.

realwiley: Thinking about it, we may be putting too much into the Toronto numbers. For one, that’s not the revenue generated by the games, it’s just what Rogers paid us to get them.

errantremark: You know they’ll sell out all the games.

realwiley: And I wouldn’t be surprised if he overpaid in order to get his foot in the door. Sure, they will. But it doesn’t necessarily reflect the NFL interest in Toronto. I mean, it might be high. I’m not saying that. But condensing all the fans into one game per year may be skewing whatever it is.

errantremark: right, I know it skews a bit because it’s more of a yearly event than a regular occurrence, but 78 mil for 5 games is NOT ridiculous.

And TO has a huge NFL demand. [ed. Note: speculation]

realwiley: Maybe, maybe not. I mean it probably does, i just haven’t seen it measured

errantremark: If you check their TV ratings, I’m sure NFL games rate well.

realwiley: That may be true, but i still think it’s an unsettled issue:

“According to a Toronto Star-Decima Research poll conducted late last month, 76 per cent of respondents said they had no interest at all in the NFL, the highest figure for any of the sports involved in the survey.”

That’s Nov. 06.

errantremark: Let’s apply that statistic to the whole of Toronto: That still leaves 1.1 million people into the NFL.

realwiley: But it’s all irrelevant if Rogers thinks he can make it work. Because if he buys, he buys, that’s it. And it looks like he wants to.

errantremark: 1.1 million is bigger than the ENTIRE Buffalo metro area.

realwiley: Sure, but the Bills draw fans from all over the region, and responding “yes” in a poll doesn’t necessarily equate to buying tickets. Whereas saying NO does translate.

errantremark: True, but the money potential is still 5x greater. With a local team you can pretty much guarantee to convert at least 10 percent of the population to interest, just by having a team. With marketing, let’s add another 10 percent. That’s 2 million people into NFL football right there. Add the outlying Toronto areas, Hamilton, etc. and you have a huge population to draw on, one populated by wealthier versions of Buffalo residents, demographic-wise.

realwiley: Maybe. That’s a lot of extrapolation though.

errantremark: It’s not ludicrous extrapolation.

realwiley: I think what gives Toronto the real edge is this: businesses

Buffalo will sell out the games. Toronto will sell out the games.

But in Buffalo, there aren’t a ton of big corporations to buy luxury suites. In Toronto, there are, and that’s the big money maker there.

errantremark: Plus, think TO merchandise – as long as they don’t do something stupid like naming the team after a cheap promotional tie-in (which set the Raptors back in jersey sales more than simply having Vince Carter), they’ll make a killing.

realwiley: Maybe. What I’d be interested to know is if the NFL ever has, or would, not approve a higher bidder who was looking to move the team.

Like, I think Buffalo investors will offer the Wilsons market value, or even a bit above, to keep the team. But this guy in LA, or Rogers in Toronto, can just tack on a hundred million if they want, and blow the Buffalo group out of the water. So, can we raise enough ruckus to force the NFL to only accept the Buffalo deal, since it did meet or exceed market price, even if it’s not as lucrative as an LA or TO deal?

errantremark: As much as I can understand considering Toronto, you’re right on the money with the Cleveland analogy: I think it behooves the NFL to keep a team in Buffalo. I think they have to accept market price to keep a team in town. I mean, the Rams moved from LA to St. Louis – big lucrative (albeit indifferent) market to a small one. Buffalo is a passionate and modestly profitable market, and will continue to be, with a team with entrenched fans.