There are rumors, and there is stuff with teeth. This may have teeth. The Buffalo News has reported that the Jacobs family is the front-runner to buy the Buffalo Bills. But, it’s not so cut and dry.
The Jacobs family has ties to the NHL’s Boston Bruins, and have been on a short list of local people with pockets deep enough to keep the Bills in Buffalo. The NFL does not allow for an individual or group to hold a controlling interest in more than one team in an NFL city. Jeremy Jacobs is worth a reported $3.1 Billion, and is the owner of the Bruins. That could be a big red flag with the NFL. However, as stated in the Buffalo News article, there are options for the Jacobs family. They could sell the Bruins, an action I believe to be unlikely.
One likely possibility is that Jeremy Jacobs has his sons take control of the Bills, removing them from anything with a Bruins letter head. If that is done the NFL would likely approve the sale of the team. The league has gone on record several times stating that the Buffalo Bills should stay in Buffalo. The league aside there is political motivation here as well; Sen. Charles E. Schumer, has stated that any party looking to move the team out of Buffalo will not have his offices help.
The lease’s structure and the non-relocation agreement structure is a major inhibitor for someone to come in and buy the team with the speculative expectation of relocating the team to a different market,” said Marc Ganis of SportsCorp Ltd., a Chicago sports consulting firm with strong connections in the NFL. [TBN]
This is nothing more than one more name in the hat, but this one has been rumored before. It’s clear that Mary Wilson is not going to hold on the Bills very long, and a fast sale is most likely desired. However, it’s unlikely anything would be official until March.