Just three days ago I wrote a column on the merits of the Jacobs family being the logical choice to buy the Buffalo Bills and those sentiments are now being echoed by other members in the local media. However, since that article I have been given information that indicates the Rogers family out of Toronto should be considered serious contenders. It is the Rogers family and Rogers Media that did the Toronto series deal with the Buffalo Bills and obviously already have a strong business relationship with the team.

Thursday the headlines out of Toronto again touted rock star Jon Bon Jovi as the face of a Toronto based group that is bidding on the Bills. The story has Bon Jovi partnering with Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, chairman Larry Tanenbaum to buy the team, but also mentions the Rogers family.

Bon Jovi is reportedly worth 300 million, which is impressive, but not rich enough to personally buy an NFL team. However, Tanenbaum, is worth an estimated 1.2 billion which could possibly qualify him as the 30% controlling stake-holder. Yet the Bills will undoubtedly sell for at least 1 billion dollars so by my math Bon Jovi and Tanenbaum would need partners with deep pockets. The Rogers family have those deep pockets.

Edward Rogers III and family have an estimated net worth of around 7.6 billion so coming up with the cash to buy the team out right is no problem. The Rogers fortune comes from Rogers Communications, the biggest multimedia corporation in Canada

My thoughts are that if the Rogers family was successful in buying the team they would absolutely want to move the team to Toronto. We know that the Erie County lease prohibits relocation for at least six years which would give a Toronto based owner plenty of time to build a new stadium.

Ted Rogers and Ralph Wilson , 2008

Ted Rogers and Ralph Wilson , 2008

My source tells me that the feeling is strong within Rogers Communications entities that the Rogers family will be the next owners of the Buffalo Bills. We know that Ralph Wilson met with the late Ted Rogers in 2008 when the Toronto series deal was struck so it’s possible conversations in regards to the sale of the team have already happened.

If the Bills were eventually moved to Toronto there would obviously be an outcry from fans and political leaders at all levels. Some may feel that at least the team was still close enough to attend the games, but of course they would no longer be the “Buffalo” Bills.

The NFL would have okay the relocation and there would be television revenue questions and possible tax ramifications for players. Plenty of questions as to how this deal could work, but if the league is already considering a franchise in London England then one in Toronto Canada is not a big deal. Stay tuned…..

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