April Fools: CFL Team Says They’re Playing Bills
— Toronto Argonauts (@TorontoArgos) April 1, 2015
This is an April Fools Joke. I repeat… This is an April Fools Joke.
Earlier today, the Toronto Argonauts tweeted they would be playing the Buffalo Bills in an exhibition game at Ralph Wilson Stadium…on May 29.
The Bills have even joined in on the fun. Butttttttt we’re not buying it.
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) April 1, 2015
Here is the Argos release.
Toronto – The Toronto Argonauts Football Club has thrown down the gauntlet today, announcing that the team will take part in an exhibition matchup on May 29 against the Buffalo Bills of the NFL. The game is a throwback to the cross-league matchups of the past, when NFL and AFL teams travelled to Canada for seven games against CFL squads between 1950 and 1961. This time around, the battle shifts to Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo, where the teams will alternate between CFL and NFL rules each half.
“We’re extremely excited about this opportunity and we think our fans should be excited too” said Argonauts Senior Vice President David Bedford. “We first established a partnership with the Buffalo franchise through the Bills in Toronto series, and we’re excited to be taking the next logical step with a head-to-head matchup between our teams.”
The idea for a Bills – Argos matchup was first suggested in January by newly-appointed Bills Head Coach Rex Ryan, who lived in Toronto with his mother and two brothers from 1966 – 1976.
“I love Toronto,” said Ryan in an interview on Toronto radio immediately following his hiring with the Bills. “And quite honestly, if the Argos want to play us, we’ll play them too.”
Although he didn’t have a chance to experience one first hand, Argos alumnus Nick Volpe fondly remembers the days when franchises from either side of the border squared off in games played purely for bragging rights.
“I think it’s a fantastic idea, and I hope it brings back what was once a great tradition for the two leagues” said Volpe, who was a placekicker and backup quarterback on the Argonauts’ 1950 Grey Cup team. “I’ve even considered getting back into the weight room to see if I can suit up again,” joked the 88 year old.