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Pro Football Hall of Fame Inductees Include Former Snubs, and First-Ballot Honors

February 1st, 2015 at 9:00 AM
By Anthony Custode Jr

The Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2015 will include two big names that have been snubbed far too many times, along with a couple of worthy first-ballot inductees.

Charles Haley and Tim Brown will no longer have to endure another season of wondering if they will make the cut. Haley is a five-time Super Bowl winner, and Brown was one of the greatest wide receivers of his time, and did it without a steady quarterback. Fans continuously scratched their heads each year Haley was left out of the Hall of Fame, while many knew it was only a matter of time for Brown. Actually, fans of the Buffalo Bills specifically thought this would be Brown's year, after Andre Reed was inducted last year. That sentiment proved to be correct.

Speaking of the Bills, they will be represented once again this year, as Bill Polian will be inducted as a contributor. Everything Polian touched in the NFL turned to gold, as he constructed the only team in NFL history to make it to four-straight Super Bowls in Buffalo. He then took a brand new Carolina Panthers team to the playoffs, and chose Peyton Manning over Ryan Leaf to quarterback the Indianapolis Colts. That decision made him look like a genius, as Manning won a Super Bowl for the Colts, and will eventually be enshrined as well, while Leaf continues to battle legal issues in a troubled life.

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Buffalo Bills Coaches Relish Shot at Potential Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots

January 31st, 2015 at 5:00 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

New Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan and much of his staff already had no love lost for the New England Patriots. That they may get a shot to beat the Pats as Super Bowl champions next season is proving to be that much more of a motivating factor heading into 2015, though.

Ryan famously said he had no intentions of "kissing their rings" when he became New York Jets coach in 2009. He held his own against the Pats, too, going 4- 9 against New England, including a playoff win in 2010 in Foxborough.

Ryan first addressed the Patriots during his introductory Bills press conference, saying the Bills would not back down from anyone. He told the NFL Network Friday that the chance to dethrone the Patriots offered one more incentive to take the Buffalo job:

"It's a little icing on the cake. Obviously, (Patriots coach Bill Belichick) is a first ballot Hall of Fame coach and may go down as maybe the greatest coach in the history of our game. But I want to compete against him and the very best, so I don't have to look any farther than him. But I'm going to have a team out there that's going to be ready for him, I can promise you that. Will we win? I guess we're going to find out."

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New Buffalo Bills Stadium Essential, Roger Goodell Reiterates

January 31st, 2015 at 1:00 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

Progress toward building a new Buffalo Bills stadium being built is music to the ears of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

As reported by ESPN, Goodell said in his Super Bowl press conference that a new stadium is essential to the Bills' long-term survival in Western New York.

Built in 1973, Ralph Wilson Stadium is now one of the older facilities in the NFL. It underwent $130 million in renovations last offseason, but Goodell said it still lacks many of the money-making amenities like luxury suites that other teams enjoy:

"I do believe that a stadium, long term, is going to be needed in that marketplace," said Goodell, a native of Jamestown in Chautauqua County. "I'm from Western New York. I love Ralph Wilson Stadium, but it's got to compete against a lot of these new stadiums that have a lot of very important features that that stadium doesn't have."

The Bills have completed two years of the 10-year lease the team signed with host Erie County prior to the 2013 season. New owners Terry and Kim Pegula said when they bought the team in October that a new stadium would be seriously considered in the future.

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Buffalo Bills Running Back Fred Jackson Backs EJ Manuel

January 31st, 2015 at 11:00 AM
By Anthony Custode Jr

When Rex Ryan took over as head coach for the Buffalo Bills, he was immediately hit with questions regarding the quarterback position.

EJ Manuel was benched after four games last season in favor of veteran Kyle Orton. Orton has since retired, leaving Manuel and Jeff Tuel on the roster at the moment. Ryan said that the team will bring in competition for Manuel at the quarterback position, but Bills running back and offensive captain Fred Jackson says he still has faith in Manuel.

“I do think that he can be a starting quarterback,” Jackson told the Michael Kay Show on ESPN radio, reported by Buffalobills.com. “He did things where he was trying to take that next step. At practice he talked to Kyle and learned from Kyle. I saw him talking to (Jim) Schwartz after practice asking him what defenses are keying in on and trying to do. He was talking to different guys that played different positions, picking their brains. I think he has to figure out what defenses are trying to make him do and figure out ways to get out of that. He’s a smart guy who can pick up offenses, but once he figures that out it’ll allow him to go to the next level.”

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NFL Hall of Fame Inductees to Be Announced Tonight

January 31st, 2015 at 9:00 AM
By Anthony Custode Jr

'Twas the night before the Super Bowl, and all through the Hall, was a nervousness from candidates that were hoping for a call.

OK, that was corny, but the point has been made.

The NFL will announce its Hall of Fame inductees for the Class of 2015 tonight. Once again, there are some interesting names on the list. Charles Haley and Tim Brown are back, again, while Tony Dungy, Marvin Harrison, Terrell Davis, John Lynch and Kurt Warner made the list of finalists in the first year of their respective eligibility.

There is a Bills connection once again this season, as Bill Polian is a finalist for the Hall of Fame in the contributor category. Polian was the architect that assembled the Bills team in the early 90s that went to four straight Super Bowls. Polian then went to the Indianapolis Colts, where he drafted Peyton Manning and eventually won a Super Bowl.

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