Jim Kelly doesn’t hide the way he feels about the Buffalo Bills and western New York.
“I have no mixed emotions,” says the Hall of Fame quarterback. “My loyalty is with western New York and the Buffalo Bills.”
But Kelly also knows the Bills need financial help to stay in Buffalo, and while many think that help will come from corporate Toronto as the Bills continue to drift north, Kelly thinks the team can receive financial support from Toronto businesses while remaining in western New York.
“I do think that it’s important to establish a relationship with some people up here,” says Kelly, who got visibly angry when asked whether those relationships would soon bring the Bills to Toronto for four or more games per season.
That, in Kelly’s eyes, would be unacceptable, and he said he didn’t even want to think about it, because, in his opinion, it is out of the realm of possibilities.
But don’t tell Kelly this Rogers dude has a lot of green. He thinks his people have the cash to wrestle the team back from any suitors.
“I also have a lot of people that have a lot of money that I know that want to keep it in western New York,” he says. “My loyalty starts and ends with them.”
So, Kelly thinks he has the financial backing (many think his relationship with billionaire businessman Tom Golisano will be key) to keep the Bills in western New York, but he also wants Toronto businesses to help the team out.
First: If you have the money, why do you need Toronto’s support?
Second: If the team stays in Buffalo, why would corporate Toronto lend financial support? Out of the goodness of their hearts?
Kelly wants the cake, and he plans to eat it. Unfortunately, NFL franchises are extremely valuable, and, sometimes, there’s just nothing that can be done.
But Kelly does have one splendid idea. The Bills want a new stadium, and he thinks the team should consider building in the Niagara Falls, NY area in order to make the commute more convenient for folks from the GTA.
Sure, that would shorten the trip by 30 minutes, but would that change save the Bills? Not likely.
Kelly’s mind is working at a mile a minute as he brainstorms ways to keep the Bills around, and you have to admire his passion and dedication to the team, owner Ralph Wilson, and western New York.
What the future holds, though, may be out of his hands.