Take Any Buffalo Bills Relocation Rumour with a Pinch of Salt

Paul TaylorCorrespondent IJanuary 6, 2010

ORCHARD PARK, NY - DECEMBER 9: Fans celebrate during the game between the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins on December 9, 2007 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

Another day and yet another story linking the Buffalo Bills with a move to a new city. This time, the rumour mill has them relocating to Los Angeles.

John Semcken, managing partner of Majestic Reality Co. and the developer behind a potential new stadium in Los Angeles, has stated that Buffalo and Jacksonville are his prime candidates.

“Jacksonville and Buffalo are two teams in very, very small markets,” he told the Associated Press.

Personally, I do not see the Los Angeles scenario coming to fruition. Apart from the fact that this news is coming out of California rather than Buffalo, no stadium has actually been built yet.

Also, any potential new owner would have to meet all of the numerous strict relocation rules in place before any move could be considered. There is a lot of work to be done before it gets anywhere close to this stage. 

Add to this the fact that Jacksonville is in a much worse position than Buffalo and this story is a non-starter.

Having said that, Buffalo’s residents must be sick of these constant rumours surrounding their beloved franchise. They already have enough on their plate worrying about where the Toronto experiment may eventually lead.

However—and this is easy for an outsider to say—maybe the people of Western New York do not need to worry so much. That’s because Buffalo has the backing of only the most powerful man in the NFL: Commissioner Roger Goodell.

Goodell was more than happy to approve the deal for Buffalo to play eight games over the course of five years in Toronto. However, this decision was not made with the intention of eventually moving the team north of the border full-time.

Instead, Goodell felt that having annual games played in Southern Ontario would mean enough additional revenue to help the team stay in Buffalo long-term.

"I think their step to Toronto has helped strengthen that," Goodell said, according to the AP. "And I see the Buffalo Bills being in Western New York for a long time."

For anyone still not convinced that Goodell has any real interest in keeping the Bills in Buffalo, it is worth noting that he was born in nearby Jamestown, and spent his early years growing up in the area. 

Of course there are no guarantees in life and no one knows for sure what will happen when Ralph Wilson passes on. However, with the commissioner on board, you can be assured that he will do everything within his power to keep the team in its rightful place.


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