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Emil Steiner
Editor and Blogger

Emil Steiner

The author of NFL Crime Watch and Founding Editor of The League.

Remember "Canadian Bacon"

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Like 15 other Americans, I was lucky enough catch the Grey Cup, Sunday night, and I'm happy to report it was la bombe! For those who may have missed it, the Alouettes of Montreal battled the Rough Riders of Saskatchewan. In the end, the Alouettes triumphed after a 13-men-on-the-field penalty allowed them to kick an oblong ball made of pigskin through a giant "H"-- it was most exhilarating.

After discovering that such a two-four-uh-Blue exists up north, I'm surprised that anyone in Canada has the time or the energy for our pedestrian NFL. It seems like addition by subtraction to me. The Grey Cup is 97 years old, the Super Bowl is only 43. The CFL has an 18-game season, the NFL plays a pathetic 16. The NFL field seems almost impotent at 100 yards compared to the CFL's virile 110. There are but 22 players allowed during NFL plays, compared to 24 in the CFL. And our two minute warnings? They seem so rushed next to the Zen like three minute warnings. Shoot, their country is even bigger.

What could the NFL have to offer? More commercial timeouts? Spastically irregular roughing the passer calls? Chris Collinsworth?

Yes sir, I can fully understand why the Bills might want to move to Toronto. From its vibrant casinos to its massive CN tower, (a full 392 meters taller than Buffalo's HSBC Center) Ontario seems downright cosmopolitan compared to Erie County. The better question is, why would Toronto ever want the Buffalo Bills? Oh that's right... I just remembered what happened in Canadian Bacon.

By Emil Steiner  |  December 3, 2009; 12:12 AM ET  | Category:  Buffalo Bills Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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the bills don't want to move to toronto. the powers that be feel they can make more money

Posted by: nall92 | December 3, 2009 10:00 AM

The CFL field is also a lot wider.

NFL 160 feet
CFL 195 feet

So the 12th on the field has a lot more running to do. CFL games tend to be less grinders than NFL, but the quality of player is a lot lower in general.

Posted by: kiosk | December 3, 2009 10:45 AM

Full disclosure, my mother is Canadian. That said, the Grey Cup was the most exciting game of the weekend, and that includes Tennessee's 99-yard drive.

Posted by: Emil Steiner | December 3, 2009 11:20 AM

All this talk of moving the Bills, but people have to remember a few things first:

1) Ralph Wilson has to die (sorry Ralph).

2) There has to be a buyer in Toronto.

3) The Rogers Centre is pretty small (54k seats for Bills games) - the league will require them to build a stadium with at least 65k seats to host a full time team.

Bills in Buffalo forever!

Posted by: reiflame1 | December 3, 2009 12:14 PM

All this talk of moving the Bills, but people have to remember a few things first:

1) Ralph Wilson has to die (sorry Ralph).

2) There has to be a buyer in Toronto.

3) The Rogers Centre is pretty small (54k seats for Bills games) - the league will require them to build a stadium with at least 65k seats to host a full time team.

Bills in Buffalo forever!

Posted by: reiflame1 | December 3, 2009 12:14 PM

The Bills need to stay right where they are. It's blue-collar towns like Buffalo, Pittsburgh and Green Bay that make the NFL what it is. I know times are hard in Buffalo, but the fan support is there regardless.

The NFL would be a novelty in Toronto at first, but I'm not sure the fan base would be strong in the long term.

Posted by: acoberst1 | December 3, 2009 1:57 PM

The NFL/Bills would probably insist on getting a new stadium before the team could move.

Posted by: Emil Steiner | December 3, 2009 1:59 PM

what a want is a writer who can spell "canadian" properly in the headline, what the heck is "candian bacon" anyway?

Posted by: tbone41 | December 3, 2009 6:23 PM

TBONE41: Did you mean to type "a" instead of "I" in your comment, or was that also a typo like that which you criticized in the writer's headline?

I'm from Baltimore, which I believe is the only city to have won both the Grey Cup and the Super Bowl. (Please correct me if I'm wrong.) By the end of Baltimore's tenure with the CFL, I had come to enjoy the different dynamics of the Canadian version of the game, particularly the wider field's spreading out the defense that much more. (The games seemed a little faster, too, but that may just be wishful thinking in hindsight.) Watching games in the heat and humidity of the Baltimore summer was not something that I ever got used to, but the earlier start to the season makes sense in the more northern climes.

I would happily watch more CFL games, I’d even be okay if the NFL adopted the CFL’s format, but as mentioned in a prior comment, at this time the NFL does seem to have a greater share of superior athletes. The CFL has some great players, but the NFL seems to get the top choices from the collegiate talent pool. (There are notably few CFL players that have migrated south to the NFL and become impact players. They exist, but the fact that they don’t exist in significant numbers (despite the NFL’s higher salaries) is an indication that the better athletes, on the whole, go to the NFL.)

Posted by: nric | December 7, 2009 1:16 PM

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