Patriots cap placed on Ralph Wilson statue outside Bills stadium (pic)
An unidentified individual who almost certainly is a New England Patriots fan — or one wacky provocateur — placed a team cap upon the head of the statue honoring former longtime Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson outside the stadium that bears his name only days before the two AFC East rivals square off in a huge showdown.
A tipster alerted Pro Football Talk of the statue shenanigans, something that surely will raise the ire of many a Bills fan, as Wilson is one of the most beloved and revered figures in Buffalo. If the buildup to the game between the Bill Belichick-led Patriots and Rex Ryan’s Bills wasn’t intense enough already, expect it to be ratcheted up even a few more notches now.
The statue, located in the new Founder’s Plaza outside the stadium, was just unveiled last week.
Via the Buffalo News:
The Bills commissioned the life-size, hollow-bronze sculpture as a tribute to Wilson, who founded the team in 1959 and owned it for 54 years until his death in March 2014 at the age of 95. The team won two American Football League championships and played in an unlikely-to-be-repeated four consecutive Super Bowls during his tenure.
The Wilson statue is wearing a sport jacket, Pro Football Hall of Fame tie, slacks and New Balance tennis shoes. A design committee and sculptor Jerry McKenna worked closely with Mary Wilson, Wilson’s niece Mary Owen and other Wilson associates to get the look of the statue just so.
Given how recently the statue was first put on display, it obviously didn’t take long for some wisenheimer to utilize it in some serious trolling.
The Bills and Patriots, both 1-0, square off Sunday afternoon in Buffalo. Odds are good a significant contingent of Bills fans will be on high alert to make sure something like this stunt doesn’t happen again in the next few days. Perhaps a round-the-clock watch will be arranged, even.