Bills fans need to show self-control on game days

With the Buffalo Bills season coming this fall comes the talk of fan behavior and increased security at the Ralph.

As a season ticket holder, I have seen all types of Bills fans first hand. Around the league we are known as some of the loudest, most aggressive fans to play against. That is something I am very proud of and with a team as threatening to play against as a tortoise, I feel like we as fans are a necessary factor to make Tom Brady leery of coming to Buffalo other than our hotels.

Sadly, a lot of people seem to misconstrue that and think of us as nothing more than wild, drunk animals. While there are some that I will admit fall into such a category, they make up a small percentage of all in attendance. The majority of fans such as myself and the group of friends and family I attend games with drink responsibly, have a good time tailgating before and during the game and are courteous to those around us at all times.

People usually only see the poor actions of others at games and generalize the whole fan base based off of that one thing they hear. While there are some obnoxious people in the stadium during the game that’s not security’s fault.

Ralph Wilson Stadium employs a lot of security for the game and you can’t go very far without seeing more than one yellow shirt walking around. What it boils down to is self-control and how you choose to handle yourself at the game. Before we beef up security and blame the Bills organization, we should be encouraging everyone to act appropriately and control themselves and hold themselves accountable for their actions like the Bills seem to be doing with their “Make mom proud” campaign.

John McEvoy


There’s no pulling the wool over on local hockey fans

We love hockey, but we aren’t stupid. The truth of the matter is that my son and many like him cannot understand why they have to watch Nathan Gerbe and Andrej Sekera while Jonathan Toews plays in Chicago, Minnesota has Zach Parise and Ryan Suter, and Nashville has Shea Weber. I don’t have media that works for the team telling my son it’s sunny and warm while the cold rain of April pours down.

Two months ago, Darcy Regier made no mention of a “rebuild” and yet now he’s become enlightened?

In the three years that Mr. Pegula has owned the team not one big-name free agent has signed here nor been traded for. Brad Richards wouldn’t listen. Parise and Suter allegedly spurned our offers. The players that we have obtained, like in every year of the Regier regime, have been second or third tier players that have been sold to us as something more or draft picks.

Steve Ott is not Alex Ovechkin, Toews, Evegni Malkin, Ryan Getzlaf, Anze Kopitar, Drew Doughty, Sidney Crosby or Steven Stamkos. Christian Ehrhoff certainly isn’t Weber. What I see is essentially a group of cast-offs and never-will-bes being sold as a bona fide NHL team. Talk is cheap, Mr. Black, yet you and Darcy Regier sure seem to have a monopoly on it.

Richard R. Charlap Jr.


Bills need to wheel and deal on draft day to get better

I would not trade up to get Geno Smith. I think that the Eagles will take him. Even if he’s there when we pick, I would trade down as many times as I could to the back of the round, picking up as many extra picks as possible. I think there’s a 50-50 chance the Jets would take him. He could fall out of the first round.

Teams like St. Louis, Cincinnati, Minnesota and San Francisco have the extra picks in the first and second round. The Rams and Vikings are looking for a wide receiver and offensive line help. Tavon Austin, Cordarrelle Patterson or OT Lane Johnson would be tempting. I would trade back as far as the 49ers pick at No. 31.

Assuming I traded back at least two times, I would have picked up at least two additional second round picks. I would use the late pick in the first round for a quarterback.

With our pick at 41, I would take the wide receiver, either Justin Hunter or DeAndre Hopkins. With the other two picks, I’d take linebacker Kevin Minter, Arthur Brown or Corey Lemonier.

The other second-round pick would be used on an offensive lineman, either Justin Pugh or Tarron Armstead. With our third-round pick I’d take tight end Gavin Escobar or wide receiver Ryan Swope. In the fourth round, I’d take a gamble and take CB Tyrann Mathieu; we need playmakers. The rest of the draft I would take the best available player.

Bruce Wojcik


Patience of Buffalo fans is starting to wear thin

When a player or players are not performing up to established standards, they are booed. Much like a comedian, musician, actor or other public performer, professional athletes are the “cream of the crop.”

Fans pay to see them at their “peak.” When their valleys seem to occur more often than their peaks, fans boo.

Buffalo fans have always been patient. What they will not tolerate is consistent under performance. Yes, the players on the ice were young (Porter, Flynn) when New Jersey seemed to have the puck forever in last Sunday’s game, however, fans still expect a young, professional player to regain possession in a reasonable amount of time. After all, though young, they are professionals and are paid handsomely for it.

Mike Ciko


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