The quest for the Buffalo Bills by potential ownership groups now includes soliciting the services of former Bills greats to be a part of their group. All Sports WNY has learned that several emerging groups have reached out to former players from the Bills’ Super Bowl years to be part of their group at least symbolically if not financially.
Dan Kelly has already established that brother Jim has been approached by several groups, including Donald Trump, to be a public partner in their bids. Thurman Thomas and Steve Tasker have also been targeted as high profile Buffalo Bills who would be perceived as “valuable” assets in a bid.
Thurman Thomas has already released some cryptic quotes in regards to being part of a group. Thomas told ESPN reporter Mike Rodak “I have done something that will help the team to stay in Buffalo, I just can’t tell you exactly what I’ve been doing. I will tell you this, I have done something that will have the team to stay in Buffalo. I just can’t tell you exactly what I’ve been doing or who I’ve been talking to,” said Thomas.
“I think Mr. Wilson, before he passed, always had something worked out to keep the team in Buffalo. I think it’s going to take someone really special, that has ties to the Buffalo Bills to stay in the Buffalo Bills area.”
All Sports WNY has also been told by an NFL insider that Steve Tasker is a highly sought “public face” who would add credibility to an owner’s group. Tasker’s very high profile due to his work with CBS sports and in WNY as a spokesperson for West Herr has made him very desirable.
Jim Kelly of course has been out front on this issue for years letting it be known that he has a group waiting in the wings to assure that the Bills remain in Buffalo. Jim’s re-occurrence of oral cancer has him fighting the battle of his life, but he still wants to maintain a presence in the quest to own the team.
Kelly’s relationship with Ralph Wilson and the Bills organization has been the closest of any of the former players and Kelly has been compensated as a spokesman by the team for years. The one thing that will be critical however for Kelly and any of the former players who sign on with a group is that they must be a part of the winning group. To be aligned with a group who fails in a bid to purchase the team could mean being on the outside looking in as that group moves forward in operating the team.
The one thing that has been consistent in this story is the fact it will continue to grow and change as we get closer to the bids being submitted.
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