texas rangers jersey cheap Bills topple Redskins in Toronto tilt
TORONTO Ryan Fitzpatrick and his Buffalo Bills teammates learned Sunday how to turn Toronto’s NFL fans into Bills supporters.
Give them plenty to cheer about.
Fitzpatrick threw two TD strikes to Scott Chandler as Buffalo (5 2) dominated the Washington Redskins 23 0 for its first regular season win of the Bills Toronto Series.
Sunday’s contest was the sixth of eight Buffalo will play in Toronto through next season. The resurgent Bills who’ve missed the NFL playoffs since 1999 improved to 3 3 in Toronto but are just 1 3 in regular season contests.
The attendance was 51,579, meaning none of the games have been a sellout at Rogers Centre, which seats 54,000 for football. Once again, the contest lacked the atmosphere and buzz of a traditional Bills home game at Ralph Wilson Stadium.
But for the first time in the series fans were loudly pro Bills and actually gave them a feeling of home field advantage. While again a myriad of NFL jerseys coloured the crowd, many spectators vocally supported Buffalo when its players came onto the field to start the contest,
then booed the Redskins when they arrived.
Buffalo dominated the contest as the offence moved smartly under Fitzpatrick, who overcame a lost fumble and interception in the end zone. The defence sacked Washington starter John Beck nine times the second highest total in club history had two interceptions, and a blocked field goal in its first shutout since 2006.
“That was one of the things coming in, give them something to cheer about,” Fitzpatrick said. “I thought they did that today.”
“I think there was more excitement today than there has been in years past.”
Safety George Wilson was critical of playing in Toronto last week but was appreciative of the crowd Sunday.
“The fans were really excited and got into the game,” he said. “It was just good to have an exciting environment out here today.”
Bills head coach Chan Gailey agreed, sort of. He said crowd noise was why Buffalo was flagged for a false start on third and one in the fourth quarter.
“I have to teach them when it’s third and one not to do the wave,
” he said with a chuckle. “If we can learn that, that would help us but they were great.”
“The crowd was really into it. It helped us . . . they (Washington) had to call timeout because of the noise. It was good.”
Especially considering Gailey was very concerned with Buffalo coming off a bye week.
“Scared to death because it’s not something that’s normal, you’re not in your routine,” he said.
“You don’t know if your guys are back into it or not.”
“We had a couple of guys late for meetings because they were not back into the routine. It makes you nervous as a coach.”
The win moved the Bills into a tie with New England atop the AFC East. The Patriots dropped to 5 2 after a 25 17 loss to Pittsburgh.
Fitzpatrick also showed he was well worth the six year, US$59 million contract extension he signed last week. Fitzpatrick was 21 of 27 passing for 262 yards as Buffalo more than doubled Washington’s offensive production (391 total yards to 174).
The series was unveiled in 2008 amid much fanfare as event organizers wanted to prove Toronto was a viable NFL city. Rogers Communications Inc. paid US$78 million for the contests expecting southern Ontario fans to flock to Rogers Centre whatever the cost.
But a slow economy, high priced tickets initially averaging more than $180 each, compared with roughly US$51 at Ralph Wilson Stadium and struggling Bills teams have made it a tough sell.