It's a New Ballgame for TO in Bflo

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It's a New Ballgame for TO in Bflo
(Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for AXE)

Ahh … T.O. We hardly know ye …

 

Oh sure, you can parade around town with your entourage of publicists, VH-1 producers and yes-men and women. You can tour our waterfront condos and posh suburbs for that little million-dollar “fixer-upper” you’ll be shacked in during your brief stay in our little ‘burg.

 

You can get the key to the city from our mayor – not that the guy who runs a town with a nearly 9.3 percent unemployment-rate, a diminishing tax-base, rising crime and homicide statistics and a decreasing population REALLY has anything better to do with his time.

 

And what in the name of “Rick Azar” were you hosting the local sportscast for anyway?

 

No, Terrell, you’re one of us now—honest. No, seriously—you’re here, OK? Get it?

 

For instance, you’re going to the Anchor Bar for wings tonight. You’ll learn that even though Frank and Theresa’s place was where the Buffalo Chicken Wing was “invented”, eventually you’ll find the area’s best wings are at Duff’s on Sheridan and Millersport (with LaNova a very close second), but we’ll let that slide for now.

 

You’ll find that Buffalo isn’t so much a small city but a big town.

 

It’s where people dig their neighbors out when one of our famous blizzards hit, where families of laid-off auto workers still donate to (rather than take from) local food pantries and where everybody seems to know someone effected by a tragic commuter plane crash near the airport.

 

And the people love their football—and their Bills.

 

So we have to get to know you, T.O. We have questions, lots of ‘em—and that’s where people like me, the intrepid journalist, comes in.

 

+) First off TO, why Buffalo? Really?  After your release from the Dallas Cowboys, most of the names mentioned were Tampa Bay, Oakland, Washington… etc. Your agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has a relationship with the Bills signing other clients. But if there had been another suitor for your services, would you be here right now?

 

+) Football is seen as being the ultimate team game, and yet you’ve rolled into town complete with a PR contingent normally reserved for Brad Pitt (yes, and he was here too). Don’t you run the risk of alienating at least some of your teammates with everything surrounding your reality show?

 

+) Buffalo is different. It’s not cosmopolitan like your other stops. It’s gritty, blue collar and working class. In many ways, unfortunately, it can be parochial and small minded too. Why will your “act” work here?

 

+) Why, in your opinion, have NFL wide receivers developed into the “divas” of professional sport?

 

+) In San Francisco, you came in as a young receiver with an established quarterback in Jeff Garcia. As your career progressed in Philly and Dallas, you worked with established QB’s in McNabb and Bledsoe and then teamed with a young, up-and-coming QB in Tony Romo.

Now, you’re the vet and have a young QB in Trent Edwards.  Can you give Edwards more “slack” when things eventually don’t work right?

 

+)  … And in that vein, TO, whose responsibility is it to “drive” the relationship between you two—the veteran receiver or the young starting quarterback?

 

+) I think some people would like to know if you’re going to put an effort into being part of the community, and not just put your time in and “better deal” the team and the fans when that next contract rolls around.

 

+) Inside of two minutes, Bills down by four. Lee Evans is split wide, you’re in the slot. Defense is cover-two. Lee blows past his man while you find a seam in the middle of the field and manage to shake yours. Who gets the ball?

 

+) You know TO, Willis McGahee was basically ridden out of town because he said Buffalo was without any nightlife. Aside from football, is there enough to keep you interested in being here?

 

+) And, finally, the kind of vapid, celebrity-culture driven question you’ve been waiting for … Paris or Kim Kardashian? Whod’ya rather? (Okay, that one was cheap…).

 

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