By now, most of you are aware that Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson spoke to John Wawrow of The Associated Press on Monday. The 0-5 Bills' misfortunes, Wilson's confidence in the plan Buddy Nix is currently executing, and his desire for the team to draft a quarterback next April have been dominating the headlines stemming from the interview.
Wawrow appeared on The Howard Simon Show on WGR 550 Tuesday morning (audio), and while on the air dropped the most intriguing bit of speculation I've yet heard regarding Mr. Wilson: Wawrow believes that the owner may quietly be putting together a succession plan for the ownership of his franchise.
"From what I've heard in the background, and seen happening - without saying anything definitively, because I can't, because no one's actually told me anything - I have a better feeling that this team might be here longer, beyond Ralph Wilson, for a long time," Wawrow said. "I can't say that with certainty, but I get the sense there's work going on in the background that will make the transition easier. I can't really get into specifics, because I can't pin down the facts."
Clearly, Wawrow isn't reporting anything concrete here; far from it. Wawrow admitted to Simon that the possibility will always exist that the team is sold and moved once Wilson - who turns 92 this Sunday - passes away.
"I'm not saying this is a guarantee," Wawrow continued. "I'm probably at maybe 65-70, 30-35 in thinking the Bills are staying here."
Wawrow believes that there are several factors working in Buffalo's favor that could lead to an ownership succession plan.
"Given the fact that Ralph Wilson is in the Hall of Fame, and built a legacy on voting against relocation, and the fact that I know the NFL wants a market in this region - and I'm speaking to the Toronto/Buffalo corridor - I can't foresee a team moving out of this region just because it's so valuable as far as its proximity goes," Wawrow said. "I think the history is also there with the number of people from the Bills organization who are in Canton."