ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) – It looks like we could see fans at Bills Stadium for their upcoming playoff game.
Governor Andrew Cuomo says the Bills have proposed having 6,700 fans in the stadium for the postseason. The state Health Department is taking a look at a model where fans would be tested before they go in to the stadium.
Nothing is finalized yet but players are excited about the possibility of having fans back in the stands.
“I hope that we can because that would be an inspiration for us to have fans back in the stadium and we know how much it would mean to those 6,700 fans that are there. Obviously we wish we had Bills Mafia in the stands and this is the year we would really use them,” Bills quarterback Josh Allen said.
“I know they’re chomping at the bit to get back in there so whatever it needs to get done I know Bills Mafia will be willing to do it in order to get in the stadium. Fingers are crossed for that one.”
The Bills said in a statement:
We are continuing to work with the Governor’s office regarding the details of a plan to possibly host a limited amount of spectators at our home playoff game. Nothing has been finalized at this point.”
“That’s awesome, it’s a step in the right direction you know I don’t know how you’re gonna figure out which 6,700 are gonna be the ones at the game because I’m sure if that stadium could fit 200,000 it would be 200,00 filled up in that stadium so it’s a step in the right direction,” Bills safety Jordan Poyer said.
“We know this city, we know they’re excited and we know they want to be at the games so what’s important for us is to continue to prepare for Monday night and handle that and the rest will take care of itself.”
The Bills have played in front of an empty stadium at home all season because of the COVID-19 pandemic while other stadiums around the NFL have allowed a limited number of fans at their facilities.
There are two games left in the regular season then they’re guaranteed to host a playoff game after winning the AFC East for the first time in 25 years.
“That would be amazing, it’s been hard playing with no fans this whole year so that would be amazing just give us momentum. Fans mean a lot to us as players so just to have them out there enjoying that moment with us it would be very big so I’m hoping it can happen,” Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds said.
When coming home from Denver after clinching the division title last week, the Bills were greeted by thousands of fans at the airport and for some players like wide receiver Stefon Diggs, that was the first time they experienced Bills Mafia.
“That was crazy. I’ve never experienced anything like that not in high school, college. I’ve literally never experienced anything like that so it was eye opening,” Diggs said.
“You’re thankful to have fans like that, loyal fans and they give us something to play for knowing that they can’t be in the stadium but they’re pulling for us so it’s a good feeling.”
And while I’m sure the Bills would love the stadium to be packed, there is still a pandemic going on and coronavirus is still a threat so they’ll take any number of fans they could get.
“It doesn’t matter how many fans we have it’s gonna be loud. Our fans are definitely the best fans in the NFL. Most people saw the videos when we came back at the airport and yeah it’s a special place. The fans here are awesome,” Bills wide receiver Andre Roberts said.