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Dolphins at Bills 1980 season opener (Full game)


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7 minutes ago, dollars 2 donuts said:

 

 

I was there with my brother.

 

Total euphoria.  I remember it like it was yesterday.  Truly I do.

 

It remains one of my fondest Bills memories.

Same!

 

My brother was a field stormer. I stayed in the seats to observe.

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I am proud to say that I helped carry the goalpost to Ralph’s box.  And yes alcohol was involved.

Holy!  Seriously, I have been collecting games for about 30 years.  This is the one game I have always wanted, and been looking for forever.  I have been trading games with Dolphins fans in Miami and

1 hour ago, Buftex said:

It's funny, growing up, I loved Ferguson.  Some of my older relatives hated him...the usual complaints: hangs his head, always looks miserable... for some reason, their criticism only made me like him more.  But, sometimes, going back and looking at some of these old games, I do see notice it a bit more.  

 

The biggest thing coming out of this game, for me, beside ending the streak, was the revelation of Joe Cribbs.  There just weren't too many running backs catching passes out of the backfield at that time.  Of course, Roger Craig is always known for this, but Cribbs was every bit his equal in that regards.  I swear, if Cribbs career in Buffalo hadn't been so acrimonious (Ralph was cheap!), he would be a more revered figure in Bills history, if not NFL history. He was a hell of a threat in his first stint with the Bills. Barely used in his second stint...

We missed the 3 best years of his career with the WFL. He was never the same. Knox had fantastic years with Seattle after he left, too.

F-U, Ralph!🖕

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25 minutes ago, Chandler#81 said:

We missed the 3 best years of his career with the WFL. He was never the same. Knox had fantastic years with Seattle after he left, too.

F-U, Ralph!🖕

Yeah, as grateful as I am to Ralph Wilson in some ways, he really ruined a good thing with those Knox era teams.

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27 minutes ago, Buftex said:

Yeah, as grateful as I am to Ralph Wilson in some ways, he really ruined a good thing with those Knox era teams.

 

The thing that really hurt in 1980 was getting swept by the Colts. Win one of those games and I believe the Bills would have had homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. Good chance it would have been the Bills vs Eagles instead of the Raiders in the Super Bowl.

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4 hours ago, Greg S said:

 

The thing that really hurt in 1980 was getting swept by the Colts. Win one of those games and I believe the Bills would have had homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. Good chance it would have been the Bills vs Eagles instead of the Raiders in the Super Bowl.

I've always thought this.  I was at the Colt game at Rich after the great win in San Diego.  When the Bills were coming out onto the field, a bunch of us were standing over the tunnel, all chanting "Six and O!"  The Bills offense never really got going in that game, and you're right, winning either game in 1980 over a mediocre Baltimore team would have given the Bills homefield throughout.

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Posted (edited)

I was at the game.  15 years old walking up and down the aisles in the upper deck selling candy and popcorn.  Got yelled at a bunch of times for bring in the way!  Fundraiser for a drum & bugle corps I marched with back then.  Wasn’t a football fan yet, but that started to change with the 80 and 81 Bills.

 

Remember watching as a bunch of fans carrying a chunk of the goal post up the stands and tossed it over the rim of the stadium in the end zone opposite the scoreboard.  Seen a lot of crazy stuff at Bills games, but that had to be the most memorable.

Edited by davefan66
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Wow that was really cool to watch.

A few thoughts...

 

I was ten and knew nothing of the streak and was just beginning to follow NFL football.  I knew very little of the details of this game other than the victory and the post-victory celebration.  I knew more about the rest of the 1980 season including Cribbs amazing year and sadly Ferguson's ankle. 

 

Cribbs and Butler could play in 2021 NFL.  Maybe Smerlas as 3-tech DT.  Not sure there is another player on either team athletic enough to play by current standards.  

 

The 2020 Clemson, Alabama, or Ohio State team would have beaten either the 1980 Bills or Miami by 20 points.  I know people say current bad NFL teams would lose to the best college teams but that is non-sense.  However the talent difference between 1980 and 40 years later is undeniable.  I suspect even some average collefge teams beat these teams from 1980.  

 

My God were these players small.  I think the announcer said a 270lb OT.  Reggie McKenzie looks like he is smaller than some current NFL safeties.  

 

The color analyst said Ferguson was most underrated QB in the NFL.  He is on my short list for most overrated Bill of all time second only to Talley.  

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19 hours ago, Chandler#81 said:

I, too, didn’t realize we/Fergy played so poorly. The first 40 minutes are unwatchable! 

This long overdue win coupled with the emergence of Joe Cribbs, catapulted the team to a 5-0 start and eventual Division Championship. Some truly memorable games in this season, including a thriller in San Diego week 4, crushing the Raiders (which became Plunketts’ new birth, OT vs the Rams, late game heroics @ Jets and Division Title at Joe Montana-led San Fran.

 

Were it not for breaking a decade-long losing streak, this would have quickly become a very forgettable game.

 

WHAT?! No video of the goalposts being torn down??😳

Beating the defending champion Steelers to clinch a playoff spot but not the Division title yet

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7 hours ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Wow that was really cool to watch.

A few thoughts...

 

I was ten and knew nothing of the streak and was just beginning to follow NFL football.  I knew very little of the details of this game other than the victory and the post-victory celebration.  I knew more about the rest of the 1980 season including Cribbs amazing year and sadly Ferguson's ankle. 

 

Cribbs and Butler could play in 2021 NFL.  Maybe Smerlas as 3-tech DT.  Not sure there is another player on either team athletic enough to play by current standards.  

 

The 2020 Clemson, Alabama, or Ohio State team would have beaten either the 1980 Bills or Miami by 20 points.  I know people say current bad NFL teams would lose to the best college teams but that is non-sense.  However the talent difference between 1980 and 40 years later is undeniable.  I suspect even some average collefge teams beat these teams from 1980.  

 

My God were these players small.  I think the announcer said a 270lb OT.  Reggie McKenzie looks like he is smaller than some current NFL safeties.  

 

The color analyst said Ferguson was most underrated QB in the NFL.  He is on my short list for most overrated Bill of all time second only to Talley.  


Simple, give yesteryear players the same kind of year round training and then talk to us.

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7 hours ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Wow that was really cool to watch.

A few thoughts...

 

I was ten and knew nothing of the streak and was just beginning to follow NFL football.  I knew very little of the details of this game other than the victory and the post-victory celebration.  I knew more about the rest of the 1980 season including Cribbs amazing year and sadly Ferguson's ankle. 

 

Cribbs and Butler could play in 2021 NFL.  Maybe Smerlas as 3-tech DT.  Not sure there is another player on either team athletic enough to play by current standards.  

 

The 2020 Clemson, Alabama, or Ohio State team would have beaten either the 1980 Bills or Miami by 20 points.  I know people say current bad NFL teams would lose to the best college teams but that is non-sense.  However the talent difference between 1980 and 40 years later is undeniable.  I suspect even some average collefge teams beat these teams from 1980.  

 

My God were these players small.  I think the announcer said a 270lb OT.  Reggie McKenzie looks like he is smaller than some current NFL safeties.  

 

The color analyst said Ferguson was most underrated QB in the NFL.  He is on my short list for most overrated Bill of all time second only to Talley.  

 

Take a look at where Fergie’s stats were when he hung the cleats up.  Overrated?  Ha.

 

Also, you’re dead wrong on your college vs. pro assessment, and comparing 80s players to current players is pure folly.

 

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On 6/9/2021 at 2:12 AM, Chandler#81 said:

WHAT?! No video of the goalposts being torn down??😳

LOL, I stayed up waaay too late last night watching that until the end, just waiting for the goalpost "scene" ... That said, it's funny how much that game was NOT as I had remembered (and I am certainly "of age" to have remembered!). I mean -- Fergy was Peterman-esque in the first half!! Also, for 42 years I had carried the thought that Shula had pulled Griese on their penultimate drive just to spite us. After 20 straight losses to those SOBs, I wanted Griese ON the field at the final gun, drinking in the humiliation! But Miami was very much still in the game at the end; I guess Shula was genuinely trying to win after all with Strock in there! 

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22 hours ago, Greg S said:

 

The thing that really hurt in 1980 was getting swept by the Colts. Win one of those games and I believe the Bills would have had homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. Good chance it would have been the Bills vs Eagles instead of the Raiders in the Super Bowl.

 

This is what tempers my admiration for Knox as a coach. His teams had a bad habit of going completely flat at odd times -- in 1980 the two losses to the Colts and a complete collapse in the second half at home against Atlanta; in 1981 collapse against the Cowboys and Cardinals immediately come to mind.

1 minute ago, RJ (not THAT RJ) said:

 

This is what tempers my admiration for Knox as a coach. His teams had a bad habit of going completely flat at odd times -- in 1980 the two losses to the Colts and a complete collapse in the second half at home against Atlanta; in 1981 collapse against the Cowboys and Cardinals immediately come to mind.

 

Not to mention the horrific month that ended the 1982 season....

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Was also at this game w/ my Dad and my brother.  Will always remember the piece of goal post being carried up to Ralph's box.  What a fun time.

 

Also remember some people tossed a piece over the side of the stands - I guess no one got killed...

 

Edited by stevewin
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34 minutes ago, RJ (not THAT RJ) said:

 

This is what tempers my admiration for Knox as a coach. His teams had a bad habit of going completely flat at odd times -- in 1980 the two losses to the Colts and a complete collapse in the second half at home against Atlanta; in 1981 collapse against the Cowboys and Cardinals immediately come to mind.

I seem to recall the Bills were up 14-0 to Atlanta and in the second Colt game in 1980.

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On 6/9/2021 at 9:21 AM, Buftex said:

It's funny, growing up, I loved Ferguson.  Some of my older relatives hated him...the usual complaints: hangs his head, always looks miserable... for some reason, their criticism only made me like him more.  But, sometimes, going back and looking at some of these old games, I do see notice it a bit more.  

 

The biggest thing coming out of this game, for me, beside ending the streak, was the revelation of Joe Cribbs.  There just weren't too many running backs catching passes out of the backfield at that time.  Of course, Roger Craig is always known for this, but Cribbs was every bit his equal in that regards.  I swear, if Cribbs career in Buffalo hadn't been so acrimonious (Ralph was cheap!), he would be a more revered figure in Bills history, if not NFL history. He was a hell of a threat in his first stint with the Bills. Barely used in his second stint...

My friends and I all loved Fergy - and like you said my Dad always complained about the body language etc.  Stupid adults 😛

 

One memory from high school I will never forget was in 10th grade, in school after the draft my geometry teacher Mr Miner, out of nowhere, at the beginning of class just started going through the Bills draft (on the chalk board!) and I'll never forget how high he was on Joe Cribbs - just was going on and on about how good he would be.  It was crazy because you would never even have known the guy was a Bills fan - never spoke a word about the Bills all year - but on that day he was dissecting the draft in front of the class and going on and on about Joe Cribbs.

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23 hours ago, Greg S said:

 

The thing that really hurt in 1980 was getting swept by the Colts. Win one of those games and I believe the Bills would have had homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. Good chance it would have been the Bills vs Eagles instead of the Raiders in the Super Bowl.

 

We blew a 14-0 lead at Baltimore (the Colts), which made it even worse.

 

Another point: under today's rules, Buffalo would have had a better chance getting to the SB that year, IMO. The three division winners (San Diego, Cleveland, Buffalo) all finished 11-5. Because of tie-breakers, Buffalo was ranked third, even though they beat the Chargers (on the road) in the regular season. San Diego was ranked one and Cleveland two. Buffalo had to go to San Diego again in the divisional since Oakland, a wild card, also at 11-5, could not play a team in the same division in the divisional round, per league rules at that time. Instead, number four Oakland had to travel to number two Cleveland, leaving number three Buffalo having to go to number one San Diego. Oakland went on to beat both Cleveland and San Diego on the road and head to the SB. 

 

Under today's rules, Oakland would have gone to San Diego, despite being in the same division, and Buffalo to Cleveland. If Buffalo had won, they would hosted Oakland in the AFC Championship game. I think Buffalo would have beaten Oakland and headed to the SB.

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On 6/9/2021 at 8:04 AM, Chandler#81 said:

We missed the 3 best years of his career with the WFL. He was never the same. Knox had fantastic years with Seattle after he left, too.

F-U, Ralph!🖕

 

Who was in the WFL for three years?

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18 minutes ago, chongli said:

 

We blew a 14-0 lead at Baltimore (the Colts), which made it even worse.

 

Another point: under today's rules, Buffalo would have had a better chance getting to the SB that year, IMO. The three division winners (San Diego, Cleveland, Buffalo) all finished 11-5. Because of tie-breakers, Buffalo was ranked third, even though they beat the Chargers (on the road) in the regular season. San Diego was ranked one and Cleveland two. Buffalo had to go to San Diego again in the divisional since Oakland, a wild card, also at 11-5, could not play a team in the same division in the divisional round, per league rules at that time. Instead, number four Oakland had to travel to number two Cleveland, leaving number three Buffalo having to go to number one San Diego. Oakland went on to beat both Cleveland and San Diego on the road and head to the SB. 

 

Under today's rules, Oakland would have gone to San Diego, despite being in the same division, and Buffalo to Cleveland. If Buffalo had won, they would hosted Oakland in the AFC Championship game. I think Buffalo would have beaten Oakland and headed to the SB.

 

The Bills did beat the Raiders that year at home 24-7 in week 4. The only Raiders score came off a pick 6. The Bills would have been a solid favorite if they had met in the AFC Championship game. 

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