Buffalo Bills News - March 26, 2014

Marker Wilson's legacy includes Bills in Buffalo [1:35 AM]
Tonawanda News reports: 'Now, with Mr. Wilson gone, it’s time for all the stakeholders to pay a fitting tribute to his legacy. State and county leaders, the NFL, the Bills front office along with those who will be tasked with overseeing the estate owe it to the late owner to show the same loyalty he did.'

Marker Many mourn passing of Hall of Famer [1:34 AM]
Dunkirk Observer reports: 'On Tuesday, Buffalo Bills fans received word from team president Russ Brandon that owner Ralph C. Wilson Jr. had passed away at the age of 95.'

Marker Passing of Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson Jr. a major loss for team, NFL [1:33 AM]
Auburn Citizen reports: 'But when you look back on Wilson's life, you need to look at the big picture. He was a World War II veteran. He was a successful businessman. When he bought the team for $25,000 and decided to locate the Bills in Buffalo, he kept the team here for as long as he was alive. It was that commitment to Buffalo and western New York, a region that has been reeling in recent years, that left a lasting impact on the entire area.'

Marker Buffalo Bills' maverick owner, Ralph Wilson, dies at 95 [1:32 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: 'As we have written, however, it would cost well over $2 billion to move the team up north -- to buy the franchise valued last year by Forbes at $870 million, to spend close to $1 billion on a new stadium and headquarters (the Rogers Centre doesn’t meet NFL standards), and to pay a relocation fee to the NFL of up to $400 million. All of that is in American dollars, which is currently worth 10% more than the loonie.'

Marker Ex-Bills QB Jim Kelly in 'serious fight' for his life as cancer spreads [1:31 AM]
Toronto Sun reports: '“Jim is still himself, the same guy we know and love. He knows he’s in for a fight, but you can imagine how Jim is approaching this: he’s got his boxing gloves on."'

Marker Ralph Wilson's death opens door ever so slightly for NFL in Toronto [1:30 AM]
Toronto Star reports: 'Now that he’s gone, they can begin building the next iteration of the NFL, one that could include Toronto.'

Marker Estate taxes may hold key to Bills' future after Wilson's death [1:29 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: 'Wilson’s plans, in large part, may wind up revolving around the pesky issue of estate taxes and what provisions, if any, Wilson put in place to reduce or eliminate payment of those taxes upon his death. The timing of his death may also be a factor. In 2014, the federal tax rate for estates worth more than $5.34 million is 40 percent.'

Marker Buffalo Bills founder Ralph Wilson dies; Hall of Famer founded team 55 years ago [1:28 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: '“Mr. Wilson may have owned the Bills, but they were Buffalo’s team,” said former Mayor Anthony Masiello. “Unless you live or lived here, you have no way of knowing the deep attachment Buffalonians have with the Bills.”'

Marker There may be a wealth of suitors for Bills [1:27 AM]
Business First of Buffalo reports: 'For now, the Bills are in the early stages of a 10-year lease extension at Ralph Wilson Stadium that was signed in December 2012. It binds the Bills to Buffalo until 2022, with any prospective buyer on the hook for $400 million if he (or she) attempts to break the lease and move the team from Buffalo. The lease does have an escape window if the new owner notifies Erie County and New York state by Feb. 28, 2020. For that short period only the relocation penalty would be $28.36 million. The escape clause only kicks in if a judge fails or declines to issue an injunction that would prevent the team from leaving through the end of the lease.'

Marker Wednesday's Ralph Wilson Coverage [1:26 AM]
TwoBillsDrive.com reports: Blank issues statement on Wilson's death (AtlantaFalcons.com)
Ralph Wilson, a founding AFL father, dies at 95 (Denver Post)
Remembering Ralph Wilson (DenverBroncos.com)
Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson dies at 95 (Detroit News)
Ralph Wilson built Bills into powerhouse for blue-collar Buffalo (Detroit News)
Buffalo Bills owner, 'special man' and Detroit's Ralph Wilson dies at 95 (Detroit Free Press)
Bills owner Ralph Wilson, once a minority owner of Detroit Lions, dies at 95 (Ann Arbor News)
Ralph Wilson, Jr. was a true gentleman-sportsman (DetroitLions.com)
Statement from president Tom Lewand on passing of Buffalo Bills' Owner Ralph Wilson, Jr. (DetroitLions.com)
Statement from Bob McNair on passing of Ralph Wilson Jr. (HoustonTexans.com)
Statement from the Indianapolis Colts on the passing of Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson Jr. (Colts.com)
Shahid Khan statement on Ralph Wilson Jr. (Jaguars.com)
Buffalo Bills owner and ‘Foolish Club’ member Ralph Wilson Jr. dies at 95 (Kansas City Star)
Clark Hunt on the Passing of Ralph Wilson Jr. (KCChiefs.com)
Ralph Wilson dies at 95; founder of Buffalo Bills (Los Angeles Times)
Statement From Vikings Owner Zygi Wilf on Ralph Wilson Jr. (Vikings.com)
Statement from Robert Kraft on the passing of Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson Jr. (Patriots.com)
Ralph Wilson, Founding Owner of the Buffalo Bills, Dies at 95 (New York Times)
Longtime Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson dies as Hall of Fame QB Jim Kelly battles cancer (New York Daily News)
Bills owner Ralph Wilson dead at 95 (New York Post)
Ralph Wilson had Giants owner John Mara's admiration (Newsday)
Giants' John Mara remembers legendary Bills owner, close family friend (Newark Star Ledger)
Woody Johnson's Remarks on Ralph Wilson (NewYorkJets.com)
Raiders Statement on the Passing of Ralph Wilson (Raiders.com)
Lurie On Ralph Wilson And Kelly's Plan (PhiladelphiaEagles.com)
Statement from Steelers Chairman Dan Rooney and President Art Rooney II on Ralph Wilson (Steelers.com)
Chargers mourn death of Bills owner (San Diego Union Tribune)
Spanos Statement on Passing of Ralph Wilson (Chargers.com)
NFL loses a legendary owner in Ralph Wilson (Seahawks.com)
Ralph Wilson Jr.'s impact reaches well beyond Buffalo Bills (Saint Louis Post Dispatch)
Statement from Gregg Williams on the Passing of Ralph Wilson (StLouisRams.com)
Statement from Titans CEO/President Tommy Smith on Death of Ralph Wilson (TitansOnline.com)
Ralph Wilson, owner of Buffalo Bills, dies at 95 (Washington Post)
Buffalo Bills founder Ralph Wilson dies at 95 (USA Today)
Detroit aching after the deaths of Wilson, Ford Sr. (USA Today)

Marker Ralph Wilson will be missed [1:25 AM]
ESPN reports: 'I always appreciated Wilson's wit and loyalty. Buffalo was lucky to have Wilson as an owner. He did everything possible to keep the team in Buffalo, even though he could have made more money if he had moved the team to another city.'

Marker Bills owner and founder Ralph Wilson dead at 95 [1:24 AM]
CBS Sports reports: '"No one loved the game of football more than Ralph Wilson," Russ Brandon, Buffalo's CEO, said Tuesday. "He passed away peacefully at his home with his beautiful wife, Mary, and his daughters by his side."

Marker Bills owner Ralph Wilson dies at 95 [1:23 AM]
AP reports: 'Wilson had been in failing health for several years after having hip surgery in 2011. Though he spent much of his time at his home suburban Detroit, he was well enough to attend the Hall of Fame induction weekends over the past few years.'

Marker Gov. Snyder: Bills owner made mark beyond sports [1:22 AM]
AP reports: 'Wilson was a major investor in a venture capital company that Snyder helped create.'

Marker Quotes on death of Bills owner Ralph Wilson [1:21 AM]
AP reports: 'Reaction on the death Tuesday of Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson...'.

Marker Former Bills QB Kelly expects more cancer surgery [1:20 AM]
AP reports: 'Dan Kelly says his brother is humbled by an outpouring of prayers posted on social media. Jill Kelly has been providing updates on Twitter and her blog.'

Marker Bills owner Ralph Wilson dies [1:19 AM]
The Sports Network reports: 'Since joining his seven fellow compatriots, led by Lamar Hunt, in getting the American Football League off the ground, Wilson has overseen the development of a franchise which can boast 17 playoff appearances, 10 division crowns and four AFC championships along with two AFL titles (1964-65).'

Marker Bills founder and owner Ralph Wilson Jr. dies at 95 [1:18 AM]
The Sports Xchange reports: '"No one loved the game of football more than Ralph Wilson," Brandon said Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings in Orlando, Fla. "They don't make 'em like Ralph Wilson, they just don't."'

Marker Bills announce Ralph Wilson has died [1:17 AM]
WGR-AM reports: 'Wilson, the founder of the Bills and the only owner they have ever known, passed away at his Detroit-area home. Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009, Wilson is survived by his wife, Mary, and two daughters, Christy and Edith.'

Marker Ralph Wilson's impact on WNY Community [1:16 AM]
WGRZ-TV reports: 'Other charitable work includes thousands of dollars in grants to improve athletic fields in the Buffalo area and contributions to the Food Bank of WNY, the United Way, Ronald McDonald House, Shea's Performing Art Center, SPCA of Erie County and the Hospice Center of Western New York, among other benefactors.'

Marker Wilson Passed As Bills Held Tour Of Stadium Improvements [1:15 AM]
WGRZ-TV reports: 'It is also ironic that when the tour was wrapping up, which may have been close to the hour of Wilson's passing, that the team's Vice President for Marketing and Broadcasting said something, that Wilson himself might have said, had he been here.'

Marker WNY remembers Bills owner Ralph Wilson, Jr. [1:14 AM]
WIVB-TV reports: 'Nola was sad to hear of Wilson’s passing and is concerned what it will mean for the future of the Bills. “We don’t want to see this team move. We don’t know what’s going to happen with the transition time comes. It could be Toronto, it could be San Antonio, it could be any place, but we want it right here in Buffalo,” said Nola.'

Marker Reaction to the loss of Ralph Wilson [1:13 AM]
WIVB-TV reports: 'US Senator Chuck Schumer: Ralph was a hero for the Bills, Western New York and for all of football. He gave Western New York an institution that became as much a part of the community’s DNA as harsh winters, hard work and the glorious Falls. He loved the Bills and Western New York with every fiber of his being and the legacy of my dear friend will reverberate in Western New York and in the game of football for generations to come.'

Marker Van Miller: Wilson was best owner in NFL [1:12 AM]
WIVB-TV reports: 'Wilson was a founding owner in the AFL. Miller said he led the way for the AFL to merge with the NFL, creating the league we know today. And if he didn’t plant a team in Buffalo when he did, Miller said the economics of the league today would make it impossible to move one to the Queen City.'

Marker NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issues statement on passing of Bills owner [1:11 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '“Ralph Wilson was a driving force in developing pro football into America's most popular sport."'

Marker Statement on the passing of owner Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. [1:10 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: ''“I speak for everyone within the Bills organization when I say that we are all suffering a deep and profound sadness with the passing of our Hall of Fame owner Mr. Wilson," said Bills CEO and President Russ Brandon. "We have lost our founder, our mentor, our friend, and this is a very difficult time for us all. We extend our deepest sympathies to his wife Mary, his daughters Christy and Dee Dee (Edith), his niece Mary and his entire family."'

Marker Duff's brings famous wings to Bills gamedays [1:09 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: 'The Buffalo Bills have announced a multi-year partnership with Duff’s Famous Wings that will bring the Western New York staple to Ralph Wilson Stadium gamedays. Duff’s will serve boneless wings in their four branded concession stands, along with bone-in and boneless wings in the suites and clubs.'

Marker Safety could be added role for Graham [1:08 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '“What’s interesting about him is he can play an outside corner and play it well. He can play nickel and start at nickel and that would be a good competition in there,” said Marrone. “He’s also a physical player who had about 70 tackles and four fumble recoveries (last year) where he may be in the mix at the safety spot.”'

Marker A Hall of Fame owner, Wilson passes at 95 [1:07 AM]
BuffaloBills.com reports: '“This incredible man was the personification of the Buffalo Bills. His life was grit, determination and resolve. He was bigger than life in many ways and yet he was the everyday man, driving his Ford Taurus to the local store and greeting everyone as they called out “Hi Ralph!” He will be greatly missed by those in our community whose lives he touched.”'

Marker The Pain of Losing [1:06 AM]
Bills Daily reports: Those years could allow Buffalo to work its magic on the new ownership – as we’ve seen, once you’re in Buffalo it’s hard to leave. This delay – the effective prohibition of an immediate sale and relocation – might be Wilson’s final brilliant strategic move and his final gift to the fans of Buffalo – with any luck Jim Kelly will be watching from the sidelines on game days.

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