Bills plan to fly to Detroit on Saturday afternoon; what if they can’t get to the airport?

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The Bills will play their home game in Detroit on Sunday. If they can get there.

One of the strangest aspects of the snowstorm that prompted the NFL to move the game out of Buffalo is that the Bills didn’t get out while they easily could. They instead plan to fly to Detroit on Saturday afternoon.

As noted by Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports, the Bills strongly believe they’ll be able to fly out of Buffalo. The question becomes getting everyone to the airport.

The team couldn’t practice on Friday because they couldn’t get to the team’s indoor practice facility. If they can’t get everyone to the airport on Saturday, then what?

Same-day travel isn’t ideal, but it has happened. In 2020, the Steelers traveled to Buffalo on Sunday morning for a Sunday night game. In 2012, the Steelers made a same-day trip to and from New Jersey for a game against the Giants, given that local hotels were lodging those affected by a hurricane.

What if the Bills can’t get out on Sunday morning? The game could be delayed from 1:00 p.m. ET on Sunday, in theory. While it’s not unprecedented for a team to play on Sunday night and then, basically, on Thanksgiving (the Bears did  it in 2018), it’s not ideal.

Then again, nothing about this situation is ideal. And it will be far from ideal if, come Saturday, multiple players and/or coaches can’t get to the airport because of the massive amount of now that continues to fall in the area.

Even if they manage to get to Detroit on Saturday, the disruption to the routine resulting from the snowstorm will make it much more difficult for the Bills than if it was a normal week.

79 responses to “Bills plan to fly to Detroit on Saturday afternoon; what if they can’t get to the airport?

  1. The silver lining in it all is that they play both the Browns then the Lions…not much preparation may be necessary.

  2. Pats got to play 3 games in 12 day period that includes traveling to Minnesota in the middle of that stint….but no worries the NFL TRULY CARES about players health & safety……said NOBODY!!!

  3. Somehow this will get twisted around to be a conspiracy by the NFL to. Hurt the Pats..?just watch. They could always delay the game till Monday or Tuesday to give the Bills time to let the city get set again, but please this is not some conspiracy against the Pats.

  4. This team makes zero sense. You had an opportunity to leave, yeah you wait. How stupid.

  5. Then they forfeit and enter the Thanksgiving game with a 6-4 record but with lots of rest since they last played.

  6. Could have easily left yesterday morning and been resting in balmy Detroit instead of risking it.

  7. 🎵 All their bags are packed 🎵 They’re ready to go 🎵 But the airport hasn’t cleared the snow 🎵 They’d hate to wait to play the game on Tuesday 🎵🎵🎵

  8. Doesn’t actually sound like this favors the Bills too much, as the conspiracy crew has been saying repeatedly.

    First, they lose a home game off of their schedule. But beyond that, how are these guys supposed to get to the airport? If they have to get out of their on Sunday, I’d call that advantage Browns w/ (as the article states) the disruption in schedule.

    Most Bills fans I see online would have preferred to just keep this in Buffalo. But the league is doing the right thing for safety concerns.

  9. Bring them out of there with snowmobiles then bus them to an airport outside the storm area. Problem solved.

  10. The Mafia will show up to the home of each and every Bills player and staff member and get them to the airport in snowmobiles.

  11. Seems dumb not to go today, but there could be several different reasons. It is not as simple as putting the players and coaches on an airplane. Equipment and support staff have to transported. Hotel rooms have to be secured. An airplane has to be available to charter, etc.

  12. Oh no! A few feet of snow in the Northeast! This is all so new!

    Oh Ya! The NFL did it to hurt the Pats….right? The persecution paranoia lives on strong in NE

  13. Adding to the fun there’s a travel ban right now in Cheektowaga NY where the Buffalo airport is located… good luck

  14. What if they can’t get there?
    Then perhaps the NFL will have to use there own rule and use winning percentage as the tie-breaker.
    Any more questions?

  15. Bills are supposedly a Super Bowl caliber team, they should have no issue beating one of the worst teams in the league!

  16. Belichick would have flown the team in on Monday to get used to the Detroit climate.

  17. iliketurtles says:
    November 18, 2022 at 5:17 pm
    3-6 feet of snow isn’t normal lol

    116Rate This

    —————-

    It is in New England and it won’t be “6 feet” either.

    What babies. 2 feet is cakewalk and completely normal for the Northeast.

    What absolute snowflakes. The snow comes, you remove it, some of it melts and you move on.

  18. The patriots have benefited from more bogus ridiculous calls in their favor since goodell took over , then any other team in sports, and yet their clown fanbase thinks krafts best friend goodell would do anything to conspire against them? Is clam chowder tainted with lead chips?

  19. kissbillsrings says:
    November 18, 2022 at 4:38 pm
    Pats got to play 3 games in 12 day period that includes traveling to Minnesota in the middle of that stint….but no worries the NFL TRULY CARES about players health & safety……said NOBODY!!!

    ———

    Not the first or the last team to do that. Not even close.

  20. touchback6 says:
    November 18, 2022 at 5:14 pm
    This is mortifying.

    Oh no! A few feet of snow in the Northeast! This is all so new!

    ————-

    It doesn’t matter how many times this happens. You obviously know nothing about lake effect snow.

  21. GoodellMustGo says:
    November 18, 2022 at 5:30 pm
    Adding to the fun there’s a travel ban right now in Cheektowaga NY where the Buffalo airport is located… good luck
    ______________

    The airport is not closed. Do really think that they will not grant an exception to transport the team to the airport?

  22. Remember when the pats had all those contingency plans in place for 8 inches a few years ago? How soon we forget

  23. Boston averages 45 inches of snow a year. That’s what’s gonna fall in 2 days. Nice try cupcake.

  24. 2 feet? Did someone imply it will only be 2 feet?

    There is already 4.5 feet on the ground in some part of Buffalo – with potentially 2-3 feet more coming.

    No – New England doesn’t get this kind of thing every winter. And guess what? If they were getting it Sunday, the NFL would move the Pats/Jets game too.

  25. Lol. I can’t believe some guys found a way to argue about the Patriots off this news article.

  26. billsrthefuture says:
    November 18, 2022 at 5:59 pm
    2 feet? Did someone imply it will only be 2 feet?

    There is already 4.5 feet on the ground in some part of Buffalo – with potentially 2-3 feet more coming.

    No – New England doesn’t get this kind of thing every winter. And guess what? If they were getting it Sunday, the NFL would move the Pats/Jets game too.

    ———-

    Why are we even arguing. It’s obvious he knows nothing about the Great Lakes. I myself live an hour north of Toronto and we get battered also from Lake Huron

  27. “Football says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:03 pm
    Lol. I can’t believe some guys found a way to argue about the Patriots off this news article.”
    _______________________

    Pats fan started that discussion. Just an FYI.

  28. I’m wondering if its likely going to be safer trying to travel Saturday afternoon than it was today.

  29. Yeah I’ve been talking about it being the right move to move or postpone the game. People don’t understand what lake effect snow is. That said if they’re dumb enough to wait til Saturday to fly out that’s on them. If they don’t make it to Detroit by game time, they should forfeit. No moving dates or times again.

  30. It’s a 4 hour drive through Canada to get to Detroit. Take some buses and leave sat morning to make sure you are ok. You fly longer to get to Seattle, LA etc even with snow

  31. billsrthefuture says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:06 pm
    “Football says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:03 pm
    Lol. I can’t believe some guys found a way to argue about the Patriots off this news article.”
    _______________________

    Pats fan started that discussion. Just an FYI.

    —————————————

    Lol, you got me curious to see who went first. Thats not a Pats fan. Quite the opposite. Hes just not a Bills fan either.

    I hope the Bills get to Detroit safely and that we all enjoy a good football game.

  32. If Pegula wasn’t cheap he’d have the whole team stay at a hotel by the airport the night before so everyone is there for the flight no excuses then

  33. Football says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:15 pm
    billsrthefuture says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:06 pm
    “Football says:
    November 18, 2022 at 6:03 pm
    Lol. I can’t believe some guys found a way to argue about the Patriots off this news article.”
    _______________________

    Pats fan started that discussion. Just an FYI.

    —————————————

    Lol, you got me curious to see who went first. Thats not a Pats fan. Quite the opposite. Hes just not a Bills fan either
    ____________

    The guy’s screen name is “kissbillsrings”. You really think that he’s not a Patriots fan?

  34. billsrthefuture says:
    November 18, 2022 at 5:59 pm
    2 feet? Did someone imply it will only be 2 feet?

    There is already 4.5 feet on the ground in some part of Buffalo – with potentially 2-3 feet more coming.

    No – New England doesn’t get this kind of thing every winter. And guess what? If they were getting it Sunday, the NFL would move the Pats/Jets game too.

    132Rate This

    ——————

    Oh, I see. Yes. New England, with tons of skiing and mountains and Nor’Easters up against the Atlantic Ocean, just never happens.

    lol!!

  35. There’s no way they won’t make it. The city will probably give them a personal escort of snow plows to the airport.

  36. Goodell will go to Buffalo with the US military before he cancels a game. At most the game will be delayed for a small sacrifice

  37. All the authorities have said it’s a dangerous storm. Roads are impassable. But yet the one guy who lives in Boston of all places knows more than they do.

    LOL

  38. So if there’s travel advisories, etc. urging everyone to stay off the roads, are they expecting the “plow guy” to get to every player and coaches house so they can even get out of their driveway to go to the airport?

    If they can’t travel and make it on time, it should be a forfeit. It’s one thing if a situation arises that is beyond a team’s control. But the Bills were given the opportunity to avoid any issues and are apparently choosing not to take it. Nobody to blame but themselves.

    Maybe it’s because ownership doesn’t want to incur the extra cost of traveling early? Hope they good folks of NY enjoy paying for their new stadium.

  39. I found it hysterical that people that live out of the area can’t conceive how powerful and potentially dangerous a lake effect storm can be. For the person in Boston that said they routinely get 6′ of snow, I did some research and average snowfall for Boston is 50″. Not close to 6′. Orchard Park (where the stadium is) has already received 54″ in just 24 hours! With more to come. And yes, the airport is open (it never closes btw) but almost no flights are going in or out. And there is currently a driving ban in Cheektowaga. By game time Sunday the snow may have stopped, but the cleanup will be a long way from being completed. And for those saying that it’s an advantage for the Bills; how is it an advantage to lose home field advantage and have 3 stars unable to play on defense? C’mon people. Think about the safety of fans trying to get to the game and back.

  40. goodellisaclown says:
    November 18, 2022 at 7:32 pm
    If they can’t travel and make it on time, it should be a forfeit. It’s one thing if a situation arises that is beyond a team’s control. But the Bills were given the opportunity to avoid any issues and are apparently choosing not to take it. Nobody to blame but themselves.
    ____________

    The game was not moved until yesterday afternoon. Do you really think that all of the logistics of traveling to Detroit can be arranged in less than 24 hours? The Bills most certainly did not have every opportunity to avoid any issues.

  41. Jimmypinthe416 says:
    November 18, 2022 at 7:08 pm
    All the authorities have said it’s a dangerous storm. Roads are impassable. But yet the one guy who lives in Boston of all places knows more than they do.

    LOL

    61Rate This

    —————-

    Fact: In the history of the NFL a game has never been moved into a dome due to a snow storm.

    End of discussion.

    The precedent this sets will be a thing for years and years.

  42. Why would they have to forfeit?

    Some of the comments on here are completely disconnected from what this situation is. This isn’t some basic snowstorm. The Bills found out about the move when the storm was already in full swing. Many of the players have families in Buffalo and their homes are getting buried right now.

    The coaching staff has said it – but there is much more at play here than a game. People here need to get a grip.

  43. “Buffalo’s highest three-day snowfall is 56.1 inches, which occurred in December 2001.”

    ^And the game wasn’t moved by Tagliabue.

    Goodell.

  44. The Bills have 2 games on the line including a holiday game and they waited too long to leave. This has coach McDermott written all over it. The NFL should have ordered them to fly this morning. A not quite ready for prime time team. Wide right again. At least I know what time to serve the turkey now.

  45. The precedent this sets will be a thing for years and years.

    And you will tell the grandkids, poor innocents, that it was done to hurt the Pats …right? You keep,complaining about the snow in in NE but I grew up there and ya it snowed but never 5-6 feet at on time and if you claim otherwise you are BSing as usual.

  46. I’ve lived in Pgh NYC Boston and Cleveland. There is nothing i mean nothing like lake affect snow. Boston has no clue what this storm is like.

  47. Orchard Park already has 4.5 feet with more to come. It was the right decision. Sucks to lose a home game though.

  48. Fact: In the history of the NFL a game has never been moved into a dome due to a snow storm.

    End of discussion.

    The precedent this sets will be a thing for years and years.
    —————

    Bills had a game moved to Detroit in 2014 due to snow.

  49. jkossrt says:
    November 18, 2022 at 7:41 pm
    I found it hysterical that people that live out of the area can’t conceive how powerful and potentially dangerous a lake effect storm can be. For the person in Boston that said they routinely get 6′ of snow, I did some research and average snowfall for Boston is 50″. Not close to 6′. Orchard Park (where the stadium is) has already received 54″ in just 24 hours! With more to come. And yes, the airport is open (it never closes btw) but almost no flights are going in or out. And there is currently a driving ban in Cheektowaga. By game time Sunday the snow may have stopped, but the cleanup will be a long way from being completed. And for those saying that it’s an advantage for the Bills; how is it an advantage to lose home field advantage and have 3 stars unable to play on defense? C’mon people. Think about the safety of fans trying to get to the game and back.

    ————

    Exactly. Spot on. People should research before they spew.

  50. The blizzard of 78 came on the heels of several other blizzards. I imagine it’s a similar scene trying to remove snow from roads that already have mountains of snow lining the roadside. I was surprised however at how quickly we dug out. I’m sure Buffalo has good experienced snow plowers etc and will do just as well. I am not familiar with lake effect snow but I understand it is heavy with moisture. If it gets well under 32 degrees, and the snow freezes, it will be brutal. I personally like the effect and challenge of a big storm and still having the game. I’m wondering if they could have held the game Sunday night, but the Browns would have had to fly in just before the game. They probably would just play it Monday night, but there is the Thanksgiving game 3 days later. I do think being indoors is an advantage for the Bills passing game. Prior, I thought Cleveland might have a chance pounding the rock in bad weather like NE did last year, but that’s probably not happening now. It will be interesting to see if Browns fans can get to Detroit and flood the stadium….if they can get tickets. It will also be interesting to see if Buffalo fans hi-tailed it out of town and booked rooms in Detroit for the game. It’s a 4.5 hour drive.

  51. The snowmobile idea referenced above isn’t the fans’ wishful thinking, that’s how they got the players to the airport the last time this happened (2014, also played in Detroit)

  52. The assistant to the traveling secretary, George Costanza, could easily solve any and all logistical issues.

  53. 66 inches of snow at Orchard Park at 7pm Friday. How are the players going to get to the airport. It’s going to be hilarious if they can’t get to Detroit. The NFL is going to have a real issue to make up this game. It will need to be played with how bunched up the AFC East is.

  54. I’m gonna remember this the next time Bills fans complain about a game in Miami and then gloat about teams having to go to Buffalo in the winter.

  55. 66 inches have now fallen in Orchard Park. Snowflakes? Yeah, lots of them. For those bad at math that is 5.5 feet of snow in around 24 hours. Getting to the airport is a legit concern.

  56. They will get out ok. But how many public resources, like snow plows, emergency services etc. will be wasted to get a football team out on time? Just because they don’t want to spend a couple of days on the road.

  57. touchback6 says:
    November 18, 2022 at 8:15 pm
    “Buffalo’s highest three-day snowfall is 56.1 inches, which occurred in December 2001.”

    ^And the game wasn’t moved by Tagliabue.

    Goodell.
    =======================================================
    No, it wasn’t moved. It was the December 30, 2001 game against the Jets. They had already played against the Jets in Buffalo in October. This game was played as scheduled in East Rutherford, NJ. The big snow was back in Buffalo. Please stop with the disinformation.

  58. Orchard Park now has 77 inches of snow. 77 inches is 6’5”. In other words Orchard Park has gotten exactly one Josh Allen worth of snow.

  59. Just read all flights in and out of Buffalo are cancelled. Hope the Bills got airborne before.

  60. Update / Fun Fact : The Snow in Hamburg,NY ( Near Orchard Park ) is now 77″ , The Height of Josh Allen

  61. This storm was not a surprise. I don’t know the timeline, when did they decide on Detroit? At the least, all of the gear should have been packed as if it was a road game and the green light given to send it on to Detroit immediately.

    Same with players and staff. All of them should have been packed, ready and waiting at the stadium for the signal to board and get out as soon as the Detroit option was approved. Maybe all this was done and this is just a publicity stunt. Hiring George Costanza is not a bad idea, btw.

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