BUFFALO, N.Y. — Buffalo Bills fans have something to shout about. The Bills' Toronto Series has been postponed for the upcoming season.
Bills president and CEO Russ Brandon says it's all about winning but as of Wednesday morning, the Bills weren't doing it enough to justify a Toronto game this season. In six Toronto games, the Bills have a 1-5 record.
Brandon says the series has been under review for some time but the tipping point came after the team's loss against Atlanta in Toronto last December. He says the neutral crowd and low numbers forced management to take a step back. For management, that means they'll spend the next year reevaluating their agreement with Rogers, while fans enjoy eight home games here at the Ralph.
"We're going to look at every aspect, that if we do come back, we have, again, a more robust fan experience and try to create more of a home field advantage for us," said Brandon.
The team's future in Toronto looks uncertain as of now. Brandon wouldn't say whether or not they would be back in 2015, instead focusing on their review process and new sponsorship deals with Rogers.
Brandon says the positive to come out of the series is that Southern Ontario is now home to the team's second largest fan base, now ahead of Rochester.
In a joint statement released Wednesday morning, Brandon and president of Rogers Media Keith Pelley said:
“The Buffalo Bills and Rogers are committed to delivering a first-class NFL experience to Canadians. As such, we have postponed for one year the scheduled 2014 regular season game at Rogers Centre in Toronto, and that game will return to Ralph Wilson Stadium. We will use this time to collectively evaluate opportunities and build on the foundation to enhance future games.
We are committed to continuing our partnership and have secured a robust sponsorship agreement for the 2014 season that will bring Canadian NFL fans visibility and access to the Bills. The sponsorship includes ticketing, merchandizing, media exposure, and a newly created Canada House, near Ralph Wilson Stadium, that will serve as the official pre-game Canadian tailgate zone for all Bills home games.
The NFL remains very popular in Canada and we are dedicated to enriching the experience for the fans.”
The Bills also announced Wednesday that they re-signed defensive back Aaron Williams.