Buffalo Bills training camp will not take place at St. John Fisher in 2020
For the first time in 20 years, the Buffalo Bills will not hold training camp at St. John Fisher College.
For the first time in franchise history, the Buffalo Bills will be holding training camp in Orchard Park this upcoming season. ESPN’s Adam Schefter was first to report that the NFL had informed teams that they must remain at their facilities for training camp.
The reasoning as Schefter points out is to limit travel and the focus can be on one facility to keep clean as teams try to limit exposure to COVID-19.
The Bills have a history of holding training camp at local colleges and universities outside of Buffalo. Since 2000, the Bills held their training camp at St. John Fisher College, just outside of Rochester, NY. Prior to that, the team spent 19 years at SUNY Fredonia, which is south of Buffalo.
While it makes sense from a safety perspective, this is certainly disappointing to fans as training camp always provided an opportunity for them to get an up close and personal look at their favorite team and players.
This certainly also raises the question about the future of training camp at St. John Fisher College past this summer. The team and college signed a five-year extension in 2016 that would have kept the training camp there through 2021. However, over the past few years the number of open practices, and especially night-time practices, have steadily declined.
It is also worth noting, that Adam Schefter followed this report up with another tweet that the NFL has informed teams there would be no joint practices this summer either.
The Bills under Sean McDermott have done this in the past with the Carolina Panthers and Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn recently said that the two teams were discussing the possibility of joint practices prior to their preseason game in Week 2.
There was no question that training camp was going to be different this summer due to the pandemic and this recent news certainly confirms that.