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Have the Buffalo Bills seen the end of St. John Fisher training camps?

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Was last year a farewell we weren’t aware of?

In case you missed it, apparently there’s this pandemic thing happening right now that has disrupted most of our daily lives. One of the latest disruptions for fans of the Buffalo Bills was the announcement that the NFL is mandating all teams hold their training camps at team facilities. For the Bills that means the annual pilgrimage to St. John Fisher College will not be happening this year. What could this mean for the future of training camp for the Bills?


Business as usual (next year)

The contract between the Buffalo Bills and St. John Fisher runs one more year and assuming things are normal-ish by next summer, the easiest solution is to just continue with “the original plan.”

Head coach Sean McDermott has publicly praised holding training camp away from team facilities citing the impact on team culture.

“I think we’re one of the few teams that still do go away and I just believe in that for a lot of reasons,” said McDermott this week. “One of which is getting away builds fellowship and camaraderie and you share an experience. And anytime you can share an experience, I think that bodes well for building community, chemistry and the like which are so important in my opinion to building a good team.”

If you trust Sean McDermott as much as he trusts The Process, then they’ll be back.

Contract extension

The announcement that the NFL was instructing teams to hold training camp at team facilities came on Tuesday. What else happened Tuesday? Per Thad Brown with WROC in Rochster, he was being told that the school still planned on hosting the Bills this summer.

A shout out to our own TheAfghanTwilight for the idea, but could the Bills tack on an extra year to extend the deal into the 2022 season? St. John Fisher doesn’t just host training camp because they like the Bills so it stands to reason they’d be less than pleased about the loss of one year in the contract. When both sides are open to a change, contracts can become remarkably fluid.

Taking Sean McDermott’s words on faith, maybe they’d look to extend the contract further. After all, with 2021 being the final year anyway contract negotiations would be inevitable regardless if both parties are looking to continue the relationship.

So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye

Maybe Sean McDermott actually loves holding camp away from team facilities and maybe he doesn’t. What else can he realistically do publicly except to praise the arrangement. And even if those are his true feelings it doesn’t mean he can’t value other things above the experience.

As was suggested last year by John Boccacino right here on Buffalo Rumblings, maybe Sean McDermott sees the value of allowing his players to take advantage of the new super facility for which the Pegulas just ponied up a whole lotta dough. Perhaps even the players have a hand in convincing him.

The Pegulas could always buy out the remainder of the contract. While this may have been a bitter pill to swallow before, they now find themselves in a position where one year is out of their control. That just leaves one more year. While it’s still a bitter pill, it’s a much smaller one. Perhaps a year of training in Orchard Park might reveal a benefit that helps the medicine go down.

Based on the current winds, I think we’ve seen the last of St. John Fisher. What say you Rumblers? Drop a comment below and let us know your prediction for the future of Training Camp.