With NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell a special guest of the Monday Quarterback Club earlier today he was asked naturally about the future of the franchise in addition to other issues. Here are some of the excerpts from his five minute question and answer session with the media this afternoon.
Q: How much a part will tradition and history play in the awarding of the Bills as a franchise to a new owner or will it strictly come down to economics?
RG: I think tradition and history is very important. I think the passion of the fans is important. But it ultimately comes down to can the team continue to be successful here and I believe it can because of the passion of our fans in this region and I think the steps the Bills are taking to regionalize the team and broadening the interest in the team and hopefully will attract more people to support the Bills.
Q: Have you heard from the Rogers group in Toronto about their long term plans. Have they approached the league saying they’re interested in a franchise or the Bills franchise?
RG: I haven’t had that discussion. All of our discussions have been around the international series of games and making that successful and trying to help the Bills continue to be successful in Western New York.
Q: What about the stadium and how does that affect the future viability of franchise?
RG: The stadium is obviously very important. We want to make sure we have stadiums that are suitable for our teams for the long term. This stadium has been around a long time, but there have been major capital improvements to the stadium and I think we need to continue to do that so it continues to be an outstanding facility.
Q: How much is the league suffering from the current status of the US economy?
RG: It suffers in a variety of ways. One we have direct financing which in this current environment is difficult. Two, our business partners are going through a difficult and third is really our fans. Our consumers have less disposable income. There’s concern about their future and we have to be sensitive to that. That’s one of the reasons why we have reduced playoff tickets because we think that’s responsible for what our fans are going through.
Q: Every once in a while you’ll hear about an ownership group lining up to purchase the team in the future. Is that productive, does that help or hurt the cause?
RG: We have discussions privately with a number of groups that are interested in a franchise. Some have geographical preferences and some just would be interested in owning a franchise. And again it goes back to tradition and history and this franchise has a great history so I’m sure there will be people who will be interested in owning the franchise here.
Q: Have you had talks with Jim Kelly and his group at any level?
RG: I’m aware of Jim’s interest and some of the partners that he’s interested in bringing in.
Tags: Roger Goodell
Posted in Inside the Bills