I don't care what anybody says. THE biggest NFL rivalry is between the Buffalo Bills and the Miami Dolphins. Over the past decade or so it has cooled a bit; the emergence of the as a perennial powerhouse has caused some fans from both sides to direct some venom the Patriots' way. And the love-fest of last years team, combined with the arrival of new head coach Rex Ryan and his rather large midsection (and even bigger mouth), has swayed some voters that way as well. But the Bills and Dolphins share so much natural hatred it really isn't a contest. There is a long history between these two franchises, which combined with their natural differences makes it THE rivalry to behold in professional football.
A little history
- Back in 1959, when Ralph Wilson Jr. was intent on starting a new franchise for the fledgling American Football League, he wanted to put a team in Miami. He owned a winter home down there and had been traveling there since he was a youngster, so having been very familiar with the area, that was were he wanted to go. Things fell through over stadium issues, so Wilson chose Buffalo instead.
- The Bills went 0-20 during the 1970s against the Dolphins. Think about that for a second: thedid not win a single game against the Dolphins for an entire decade. If that doesn't breed hatred between two teams (or at least from one team toward another), I don't know what does.
- Manny Fernandez, the long time standout defensive tackle for the Dolphins, has been quoted as saying: "Get over it. They had their chance to win four Super Bowls and lost them all. Congratulations. I wasn't surprised. Any team that can lose twenty times in a row to one team can lose four straight Super Bowls."
- Bryan Cox, then linebacker for the Miami Dolphins came out of the tunnel giving Bills fans the double bird salute. He then later went and sued the NFL because he claimed that racial discrimination and taunts from fans in Buffalo made him a lesser player and prompted him to drink heavily. No Lie.
- Marv Levy's squads were a solid 18-8 against the Dolphins, including a perfect 3-0 in the playoffs. Needless to say, that led to some venomous reciprocation from the fans down south.
But even if you don't include the battles these two teams have had on the field, there are the cities themselves. Are there two cities that house NFL teams that are as different as Buffalo and Miami?
Miami is: Sitting in some place called Jazid, drinking Coronas and doing Tequila shots.
Buffalo is: Eating a beef on weck at Bar-Bill Tavern while drinking a Labatt's.
Miami is: Praying that the Hurricane doesn't blow your roof off.
Buffalo is: Praying that you don't throw your back out when you have to shovel all that snow tomorrow morning.
Miami is: Golf, polo shirts, and sandals.
Buffalo is: Snowmobiling, Carhartts, and Wolverines.
Miami is: White collar, and elitists.
Buffalo is: Blue collar, and down to Earth.
Miami is: Sushi and seafood.
Buffalo is: Chicken wings and steak.
I'm sure that some of these comparisons work for other teams in the AFC East. But not to the extreme that Buffalo vs Miami does. These two teams have a long history of conflict, and as a Bills fan there is no team in the NFL that I would rather beat then the.