SSome people are fans of the Buffalo Bills. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the Buffalo Bills. This 2013 Deadspin NFL team preview is for those in the latter group. Read all the 2013 NFL previews so far right here.
Your team: Buffalo Bills
Your 2012 record: 6-10 after a 2-1 start. Every year, the Bills win one game early, and that one win—even if it's against a shitty opponent—is enough to turn every dumbfuck Bills fan into Ron Jaworski. I TELL YOU WHAT I REALLY LIKE THE BUFFALO BILLS I THINK THEY HAVE A CHANCE TO BE AN OUTSTANDING TEAM IN THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE. It takes virtually nothing to sucker these people in. They are the lab rat that keeps getting shocked by the electrified cheese.
Your coach: Doug Marrone, who went 25-25 as the head coach of Syracuse before getting this job. So he's like a less-impressive Greg Schiano. OH GOODY. Please note that you can sidestep any criticism of your won-loss record if you simply convince people that you are an "offensive guru" of some sort. Marrone's biggest claim to fame is riding Sean Payton and Drew Brees' coattails for a few seasons, which totally makes him a MASTERMIND. In reality, he was an average head coach with an average record at a below-average football school in a sport that is rigged to essentially GIVE you three to four cupcake wins per season. That's what you're getting, Buffalo. So he was an offensive genius at Syracuse? You may as well say he was an offensive genius at fucking badminton.
Your quarterback: Jeff Tuel. THE UNDRAFTED JEFF TUEL OH MY GOD THIS YOUNG MAN IS WILLING TO WORK HARD. Think about how desperate you have to be at QB to start Tuel, sign Matt Leinart, and trade (TRADE!) for Thad Lewis. Why trade for Thad Lewis when you can make your own out of felt and Elmer's Glue? We haven't even made it to the regular season yet and already the Bills have already seen one of their QBs have surgery and another end his career. Because that's what happens if you're a QB and you go to Buffalo: your life ends.
Of course, Tuel, Leinart, and Lewis are all stopgap solutions for the Bills, who are waiting for first round draft pick EJ Manuel to get healthy again. Take it from someone who roots for the NFC's equivalent of the Bills: Reaching in the first round for an injury-prone Florida State QB rarely works out. Seeing Manuel perform well in the preseason represents the best part of the Bills 2013 season. We've already passed the summit. Nothing but Tuel and empty bottles of LaBatt Blue for the next four months.
Your fantasy player everyone will hate: Stevie Johnson. Fuck Stevie Johnson with a jackhammer.
Why your team sucks: The Chan Gailey years already seem so far away, like a personal tragedy that doesn't feel real anymore. Did that happen? How could that have happened? Maybe it didn't happen. It couldn't have happened. Chan Gailey coaching your team for three years? That's just absurd.
Here is the worst part: the Gailey years were orchestrated by GM Buddy Nix, who is 4,000,000,000 years old. The Bills went 16-32 the past three seasons. Any sane NFL franchise would have shitcanned Nix ages ago (actually, they never would have hired him to begin with). But you know what the Bills did? They let Nix retire, and turned everything over to his fucking hand-picked successor.
Confident he's put in place a young foundation capable of turning the Buffalo Bills into a winner, Buddy Nix called this the right time to step down as general manager on Monday.
Do you know how fucking insane that is? The Bills are a DISASTER. They're barely an NFL franchise anymore. And yet, here's Nix in his cowboy hat clicking his boots together and being like, My work here is done. You didn't do anything, Amarillo Slim! You hired Chan Gailey! You gave HORRIBLE contracts to Ryan Fitzpatrick and Mario Williams! YOU ARE THE FUCKING WORST. How can the franchise tolerate this? I'll tell you how: Because owner Ralph Wilson is a dying, confused old man who hires underlings strictly on the basis of whether or not they'll bring flowers to his bedside. It's lunacy.
I'm not even a Bills fan, and yet I feel horrible for them. They root for a nursing home that should be burned to the fucking ground. They are an organization that perfectly embodies the lifeless, fallow, economic hellscape that is Western New York. The reason that Bills fans are so delusional about their team's chances, and the reason they will threaten to cut you if you dare attempt to manage their expectations, is because false hope is all they have. If they're forced to admit that the Bills are utterly hopeless, what hope is there for THEM? It's just validation that their lives were empty and meaningless and that living in Buffalo is like living inside an Amish cave. That's why they have to rep the #BILLSMAFIA hashtag.
Why your team doesn't suck: I have C.J. Spiller in my keeper league and he's awesome and NOTHING COULD POSSIBLY KEEP HIM FROM GAINING 2,000 TOTAL YARDS SHUT UP IF YOU THINK OTHERWISE.
The nine worst Bills ever:
1) JP Losman
2) Aaron Maybin. Zero sacks. That's a perfect game!
4) Trent Edwards. When considering the delusional qualities of Bills fans, just know that they were REALLY excited for Trent Edwards. Unreasonably so.
5) Mike Williams
6) O.J. Simpson. I mean, he did kill two people. He's the worst under SOME metric.
7) Greggggggwade Jaugaileymularkiams. Want to see something even scarier than the Bills' recent run of head coaches? Go look up the Bills' list of recent offensive coordinators. It's like the leaderboard at a terrible PGA event.
9) Mark Anderson. $8 million for five games. Buddy Nix is a fucking genius.
Emails from Bills fans:
We had a fan drown at a game last year.
You know the Buffalo Bills suck when the owner chooses to live in Detroit instead of Buffalo.
During one trip home in 2009, the literal top story on the local news was that some local dudes had scraped together enough money to put "FIRE DICK JAURON" on a billboard on the Thruway right next to Ralph Wilson Stadium. The news station sent out a reporter to interview them, and they said, "Well, somebody had to do *something*." This was treated as a very serious matter. Then, a few weeks later, the team did actually fire Dick Jauron. So, the system works!
If I was to write this email weeks ago, I would've told you I was looking forward to this season, simply on account of there being so many changes that it's practically a new team. Maybe they would show signs of hope, right?
Then the front office failed to sign our one consistently talented defensive player in Jairus Byrd, and then released Mark Anderson after he only played the first five games last season thanks to a serious knee injury. Oh, and we gave him a four-year, $20 million contract in 2012 after he was only making $1 million a year with the Pats the year before. The cherry on top is that one of our most talented lineman, Chris Hairston, has already made the PUP list. And fuck Jeff Tuel.
When the Bills start winning, I actually get more pessimistic about their chances. Started the season 4-0? Welcome to finishing 5-11.
They haven’t even had a winning record since I was in sixth grade, and even then they were a 9-7 team that blew Week 17 against the Steelers' back-ups.
I used to live in Rochester, NY. On gamedays I would go to the local sports bar and watch the days games. At said bar there was more than one person wearing a Brian Moorman jersey.
Fast forward to 2012 when the Bills cut Moorman and my Bills fan friends were contemplating renouncing the team because of such an affront to as "true a Bill as anyone since Jim Kelly."
We get 3 Super Bowls a year: the game vs. New England, the game at New England, and the NFL draft. We usually lose all three.
CJ Spiller had one of the best seasons among RBs in the NFL, was tied in yards per carry with Adrian Peterson, but our coach was too much of a goddamn idiot to actually ever use him properly. Instead, they'd rely on Fred Jackson in the Red Zone, or they'd sit Spiller on 3rd &10 because he's 'winded' so that Ryan Fitzpatrick could overthrow TJ Graham by about 15 yards for the game-losing interception.
The three stock video sequences for every home game commercial break are, have been, and always will be: Buffalo wings, Niagara Falls (the only nice part of which is located in a separate country), and an actual buffalo (which haven't lived in Western NY for about 200 years).
Also, the State of New York had to ensure the newly renovated stadium was named after the current, living owner to help keep him from moving the team.
I was in Charlotte in December 2007, and the Bills were taking on the Browns. With a 7-6 record the Bills could boost their playoff chances with a win. With a tightly contested first half I was on the edge of my seat, and as I went to take a piss I noticed a guy in a Bills starter jacket. I was so glad there was a fellow Bills fan at the bar for once! I went to give him a high five and buy him a beer, but was chided by the man seated next to him. I then saw the fan in the Starter jacket had Down Syndrome, and had been brought to the bar with the rest of his group home. The Bills would go on to lose 8-0 in a blizzard.
If you've ever been to a Bills' game you'd know that it is the drunkest place on Earth. The fans there are barely capable of forming sentences and if you walk out of the stadium without being within five feet of puke you've accomplished something.
Whenever a new Stadium proposal comes up, fans bitch about wanting to continue "playing in the cold". Yet, by November, when the Bills are either around .500 or totally fucked, the games get blacked out because NO ONE WILL FUCKING GO.
Jim Kelly and Marv Levy have cancer. Ralph Wilson does not, per his antebellum-era deal with Satan.
For the first time since 1985, the Bills were finally horrendous enough to warrant a franchise-changing draft pick in 2002. They used that pick on the shitacular OT Mike Williams, who noted assclown Gregg Williams loved because in the pre-draft interview, he had trouble fitting through the door jam BECAUSE HE WAS SO GODDAMN FAT. I hope Gregg Williams gets pulled out to sea and raped to death by a pack of mermen.
I cannot stress enough how much the average Buffalo Bills fan LOATHES the idiot sect of Bills fans known as the Bills mafia (I won't give them the satisfaction of using their hashtag.) They are the loud minority who make us all look bad. They are basically the Tea Party of NFL fan bases.
These are the types of guys who wear camo pants to the stadium, get in arguments over beer pong games while tailgating and blasting Back In Black out of a 1999 Chevy S10 as if they're the first ones ever to think of listening to AC/DC before big games.
Our kids have nothing to look forward to.
One time I walked into a Foot Locker and asked if they had Buffalo Bills jerseys, and the clerk asked me if that was a hockey team. This happened in New York!!!!
Ralph Wilson. Die. Die. Die. Die you old fucking cocksucker so that your daughter can take over the team, somehow run it even more into the ground and then sell it and it can move. The fact that the NFL puts your face out there as such a great guy gives me diarrhea.
Go to a game and count the number of Coy Wire, Paul Posluzny, or Brian Moorman jerseys in the stands. It's insane.
We haven't made the playoffs in 13 years. During that time, our highlights include:
1. Getting beat by the Steelers third stringers in the fourth quarter at home in Week 16, after which my friend punched his dad in the face because he had recently moved to Pittsburgh and become a Steelers fan while I, allegedly, cried in the stands.
2. Getting beat 8 to 0 by the Browns in Week 15 in one of the snowiest games ever, after which I, allegedly, got in a fight with a 70 year old man in a hotel lobby in downtown Cleveland.
3. Beating the Patriots in Week 3 for the first time since I was in high school, after which I, allegedly, chugged a full pitcher of beer and poured another one on my head before peeing on my friend to celebrate.
The tailgates are like the Thunderdome, if you added wings and replaced Tina Turner with a mustachioed out-of-work electrician from Tonawanda with a sleeveless “You Got The Reich One” t-shirt and a skinful of warm Labatt’s.
Orchard Park is impossible to get to on game day, it's rife with the most backwards hicks in the world (silly as it is to complain about hicks at a football game), the stadium is the most bare-bones concrete monstrosity I've ever seen, and it somehow gets 30 degrees colder there than in the city itself. Last game I went to I thought my toes were going to fall off. Wilson must be sucking heat out of the atmosphere to keep his deflated-balloon heart from withering away.
Go to any Bills blog over the offseason and read the comments. You have grown men who, without a single ounce of irony, refer to watching YouTube montages of a projected 8th round pick from Purdue as "watching tape", as though Mike McCarthy has user JimKellyNation_69 on speed-dial.
The best thing that could happen to this team is for their plane to crash on the way back from an away game. And they still would not make the front headline on ESPN because no one fucking cares about this team outside the cesspool of WNY.
Doug Flutie had one (1) good season in 1998, and then spent the rest of his career being either mediocre or downright fucking terrible. But you wouldn't know it from Bills fans who still, to this day, in Two Thousand Fucking Thirteen say they "miss Flutie" as if he'd still be playing for them if Wade Phillips hadn't been mean and benched him for Rob Johnson.
I live close by, love the NFL, and decided to get season tickets to the Bills last year.
First game against KC: Four obese gentlemen then get seated to my immediate right, one wearing a Mexican wrestling mask and going by "NAAAAACHO" and another wearing a hard hat, proceed to lift their shirts and pretend to lick each other to encourage women above them for three quarters. Doesn't work. Guy behind me leaves after 2nd quarter.
Second game against NE: Took a partner from my law firm who's a Pats fan (didn't wear any pats stuff), never been to an NFL game. Guy in front of us, before kickoff, literally fell over the benches 3 times. Took off his jersey to reveal a large surgery scar. Falls on my boss. After the Bills drop three touchdowns in the third quarter, a woman starts screaming literal death threats at Pats fans. If I hadn't been smart enough to take him up front to see Tom Brady during warmups, I'd probably have been fired.
Third game against TEN: Two guys in the section over get in a standing, drunken yelling match after one shouts "OSKIE WEE WEE" and another shouts "ARGOOOOOOOS," chants from CFL teams. Guy attending the game alone in circa 1992 starter hat gets up literally 15 times during game, asks Quebecers next to us why they're speaking Spanish.
Fourth (night) game against MIA: Complete and total drunken shitfest. Hear from a local that Ralph Wilson personally banned night games until the NFL forced him because in the 80's a guy climbed to the top of the field goal posts. Fans turn aerial placard "thank veterans" promo into gigantic cardboard airplanes. Found out the next day a dude from Rochester died, shocked it wasn't more, and supposedly there were 30 DUI arrests.
Had three games left. Thank God for Stubhub.
I'm from Toronto. Buffalo hates us, and – well, to be honest, we really don’t care. The truth is, they depend on us to fill their stadiums and arenas to root for their shitty teams and drink their wonderfully affordable American beer. We know it. They know it. Go to any Sabres game when they’re playing the Toronto Maple Leafs and you’ll see – it’s always a home game for Toronto. And they get all uptight about this fact. And we laugh, and laugh. And then we drive home to Toronto because why the hell would anyone live in Buffalo.
Can't you just post our record for the last 14 years and save your time?
They have the lowest average ticket price in the entire league, yet the supposedly rabid fan base can’t be bothered to show up.
In Buffalo, everything is named after William McKinley, an unremarkable, corrupt president whose only connection to the city is that he was assassinated there. How fitting. The only president with any true connection to the city is Millard Fillmore, who served three years after Zachary Taylor died. He was the last Whig and had no vice president. Behind the times and unprepared for disaster. Again, how fitting.
We have not had a good QB since Jim Kelly. Our most famous all-time player is a sociopathic murderer. People still talk about winning AFL championships in the 1960s, as if that somehow dulls the pain of never winning a Super Bowl. We have two good running backs, so of course we are pissing them both off so that they will leave as soon as they can. We signed Mario Williams to a 4 billion dollar contract, and the most notable thing he did was threaten to kill himself when his gold digging fiancee dumped him, then sue her to get his ring back.
You are stepping over rivers of urine as you walk anywhere in the building.
Have you seen Ralph Wilson lately? It looks like there's a very tiny black hole just behind his nose that is slowly sucking his face inward.
You know those "Conference Champions" shirts that teams sell for exactly 10 days after they qualify for the Super Bowl but before they play in it? You always wonder, "Who the hell would buy that?" After all, they're totally useless after the Super Bowl - you either have nothing to celebrate or a more braggadocious shirt to buy.
Bills fans wear those shirts (from '90-93) to this day, unironically.
The Bills suck because they hired a mildly successful coach from a college known for its basketball team and it's a HUGE improvement.
The Bills fanbase is 95% unbearable. Have you ever visited a Buffalo Bills message board or the team Facebook page? It's just a series of increasingly racist comments. Starting with subtle racists longing for the days of some obscure white player from the 60's, and making its way to overt racists calling Stevie Johnson a gang member for wearing a baseball hat backwards.
Wash the sheets all you want, but if you get out your black light you can still see Nix’s DNA all over the organization.
While spending the past nine years in central/southwest Florida, I had the pleasure of watching EJ Manuel bumblefuck his way through several seasons at Florida State and somehow manage to not fuck up badly enough for the Seminoles to lose too often.
Everything about the kid screamed "fourth-round draft pick" until good ol' boy Buddy Nix showed up to the draft.
Hope dies fast in Buffalo — almost instantly.
The worst part about my life is being a Bills fan.
Fuck Chan Gailey.
The Bills playoff drought has now seen three popes.
Probably nothing sums up the entire Bills experience better than a conversation I had once in a San Francisco hotel elevator. A husband and wife walked in with me, wearing full 49ers gear. They asked where I was visiting from, and I said Buffalo. The husband immediately looked at me and said, "I'm so sorry." This was in 2009, when the 49ers were still one of the shittiest teams in football too.
The third preseason game is the most important. So to recap ours, we lost 30-7, our best player's step-grandfather went on a murder spree, and we're working out Matt Leinart and John Beck. The sad thing is, my expression didn't change when I heard about any of this. You come to expect these things when you're closing in on two decades since your last playoff victory and there's a decent chance team officials are employing a Weekend at Bernie's type scheme concerning the owner.
Fuck Buddy Nix, fuck Crypt Keeper wannabe Ralph Wilson, and fuck the whole city of Buffalo. I hope Time Warner never brings back CBS so I don't have to watch my favorite team get slaughtered by the end of the 1st quarter every week.
It's the guy running our team- Russ Brandon: a marketing genius with no football knowledge whatsoever. He previously served as the team's general manager, which again, is extremely troubling considering he knows absolutely nothing about football. He's a former college baseball player who initially worked in the front office for the Florida Marlins, which kind of makes sense. Now he's the President and Chief Executive Officer of an NFL team. How the fuck did this happen?
Hating on Buffalo is like shitting on a guy with terminal bladder cancer who also survived the Rwandan genocide as a kid. There is nothing in Buffalo except very cold, obese people scrounging for the meager scraps of a long-depleted industrial past.
The date was October 11th, 2009.
Derek Anderson completes 2/17 for 23 yards with a pick. Posts a 2.1 QBR.
Browns snap 10-game losing streak, beat Bills 6-3.
J.P. Losman, Rob Johnson, Trent Edwards, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Todd Collins, Brian Brohm, Alex Van Pelt, Kelly Holcomb, and Drew Bledsoe can all get human centipeded.
Last playoff win: December 30, 1995. Two months after OJ was acquitted of murder.
Our coach's crowning achievement is going to the Pinstripe Bowl. Our QB's crowning achievement is existing.
Every game I've ever been to, I've seen someone wearing a Brian Moorman jersey.
My family has had season tickets since 1960, the year the team was born. My grandfather (who passed away in 1988) had the seats in his name, so my dad always pretends that he's "just here to pick up the season tickets" in grandpa's name. You know why? Because if the name on the account changes, the team will put my dad at the bottom of the list as a one-year season ticket holder and make him sit at the 2 yard line instead of the 50. Will the Bills ever figure out that my grandfather would have to be approximately 147 years old by now? I doubt it.
People were actually excited that Dave Wannstedt was named defensive coordinator before last season.
Fuck Ryan Fitzpatrick in his stupid bearded face with a $24 million dollar gem-encrusted diamond dildo.
Fuck every player drafted/signed after the 1994 season.
The Charlotte HORNETS (the old version, not the new version) have been to the NBA playoffs three times since the Bills made the playoffs, and that's before the Hornets relocated.
First time I saw tits was at a Bills game against the Raiders. Bills were getting gashed (as usual) and the crowd was looking away from the field, up 3 rows behind me at a woman who was flashing everyone.
They were the worst tits in the history of the world. Amateur porn has better tits. One was a baseball, the other a softball, but somehow they both had bologna sized nipples. My first titty experience was ruined.
In mid August of this year, I had lunch across the street from the stadium. I overheard two typical Bills fans (at the bar of course, HARD WORKING FANS!) discussing the quarterback competition. They said the following: "Yeah, it's between Kevin Kolb and that colored guy".
I felt bad that I didn't know who Jeff Tuel was until I found out that Wikipedia didn't either.
Fuck Wade Phillips. Were it not for his shitty clock management, the music city miracle forward pass wouldn’t have happened.
I was at a game a couple of years ago at "The Ralph". A more appropriate name for a stadium there never was.
The game was at 1pm as usual (because the Bills in primetime would presumably get beat in ratings by reruns of Dharma & Greg). This young, somewhat well-dressed couple had seats in front of us and had obviously hurried to the stadium from their wedding. Like many of the other louts at the place, they are drinking their faces off and are wasted before halftime. Fast forward to about the middle of the third quarter, and the girl has now done the stadium name proud and has to be carried out of the stadium. Wearing her wedding dress.
Fucking Jeff Tuel. The kid had 4 wins in his 4 years at Washington State. THREE of them were last fucking year. When he broke his collarbone, he was replaced by a fucking walk on. But hey, at least they won the Apple Cup.
An old Bryce Paup jersey is still considered to be church clothes.
A kid got so shit-faced last year that he passed out in a creek-bed outside the stadium and died. I was on a message board the other day and instead of applauding a newly passed law that prohibited people from entering this ravine, 90% of the posters complained that they couldn't take their "favorite shortcut" to the stadium. Fat, insensitive fucks.
2,771: the amount that the population of Buffalo decreases by every year.
96 million: the number of actual, non-imaginary American dollars owed to Mario Williams over the length of his fat fucking contract.
$35,000: If you were to divide Mario Williams' contract between the 2,771 people who leave the city every year, that $35,000 per person would be enough to buy each of them their own entire goddamn 3-bedroom house, because Buffalo.
$5.7 million: The combined 2012 base salaries of JJ Watt, Luke Kuechly, James Laurinaitis, NaVorro Bowman, Sean Lee, Bobby Wagner, Patrick Willis, Lavonte David, Cameron Wake and Sean Watherspoon,10 players who are all ranked higher than Mario Williams in defensive player rankings.
$6.5 million: Mario Williams' base salary.
7: Amount of healthy knees at any given time on the entire Bills' roster
1: Number of NFL teams this season who have had the thought "Kevin Kolb's our man, but hey, Jeff Tuel's a good option as a starting quarterback".
0: Number of teams in NFL history - of all of the shitty teams in NFL history! - who have started an undrafted rookie quarterback in Week 1.
Speaking of quarterbacks, I also got a leaked copy of their 2013 QB playbook, attached.
Wanna be part of the Deadspin NFL previews? It's simple. Just email me and give me ample evidence of why your team sucks: personal anecdotes, encounters with fans, etc. I'll throw any good material into the post and give you proper credit. Next team up: New York Jets. Hoo boy.
Photo via Getty.