A Whirlwind Week for the Bills

Training camp is still weeks away, but the Buffalo Bills have been in the news a ton this past week. Here's a recap...

Season Ticket Sales Soaring

The week started off with the team reporting that it had surpassed the 52,000 mark in season ticket sales, which is incredible for a team that hasn't been to the playoffs this decade. The number is the highest since 1993, during the team's glory days. Also, the team announced that five of the home games have already sold out, even before tickets go on sale to the general public. These kinds of numbers reflect the high expectations, and built-up excitement fans have for the 2008 Bills

Lynch's Legal Trouble

Buffalo police stepped up their investigation of a hit-and-run accident that involved RB Marshawn Lynch's SUV. District Attorney Frank Clark is very adamant about finding out the truth behind the accident, and has been disappointed with Lynch's less-than-forthcoming responses to investigators' inquiries. On Thursday, two Buffalo Police cars pulled up to Ralph Wilson Stadium to question players believed to have information regarding the incident. In addition to the visit, three players and two high-ranking Bills officials were served with subpoenas to appear before a jury. Rookie wide receivers James Hardy and Steve Johnson and second-year offensive lineman Christian Gaddis were the players slapped with the subpoenas, while COO Russ Brandon and the team's security director Chris Clark also received their papers to appear in court. Lynch has yet to comment to the police or the media about the accident, but the Bills did issue a statement saying, "the investigation is not a team matter, but rather a personal matter."

Jason Peters Holdout

Mandatory team mini-camps began on Wednesday without the star left tackle. He is believed to be holding out for a bigger contract from the team. Peters is currently the third highest-paid offensive lineman on the roster, and is scheduled to make $3.3 million for the 2008 season. Coach Dick Jauron was surprised by his absence, and said he would be fined accordingly. Peters had not attended any of the previous 13, optional OTA sessions held by the team.

Former Bill, Mitch Frerotte, Dies

Mitch Frerotte, a reserve offensive lineman during the early nineties, died unexpectedly from a heart attack at the age of 43. Frerotte first made the team in 1990 and then went on to become a regular on the special teams unit. He played in a total of 58 games, and appeared in three Super Bowl games, most notably Super Bowl XXVII, when he took over for an injured Kent Hull. Frerotte is the cousin of current Vikings back-up QB Gus Frerotte.

Bills Sign Corner

The Bills fourth round draft pick, CB Reggie Corner, became the second rookie signed to a contract this off-season. Corner, a four-year starter from Akron, finished his college career with 15 interceptions, seven alone in his senior year, which was fourth best in the nation last year. Corner was one of three CBs taken in this years draft, along with first-rounder Leodis McKelvin, and seventh-rounder Kennard Cox, who has also already signed with the team.

Mini-Camp Starts, Ends Early

Mandatory mini-camps began on Wednesday for all Bills players. The sessions gave the team a chance to practice together before training camp begins on July 25th. There were many bright spots, as the defense was able to test out the many new weapons it received during the off-season. Turk Schonert, the new offensive coordinator, was also able to get his feet wet with his offensive unit that was outfitted with some fresh faces, and many returning veterans. Coach Jauron ended the sessions early to reward his hard-working team, because of their outstanding attendance and work during the 13 optional OTA sessions held for the three weeks leading up to mini-camps.

The Loss of Tim Russert

The roller coaster of a week ended on a somber note with the unexpected death of Bills friend, and fan Tim Russert. The world was shocked to hear of the 58-year-old's passing on Friday, and nowhere was his death felt more than in the city of Buffalo and the Buffalo Bills organization. For years, Russert was the team's most visible fan across the nation and he was never afraid to talk about his roots in Buffalo with his beloved Bills. He epitomized the "common man" from Buffalo, and was the face of Bills fans everywhere. With his passing, the world lost an icon, and Bills Nation lost a true friend.


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