The Buffalo Bills, you may have heard, are gearing up to build a new venue in Orchard Park to replace their current facility, Highmark Stadium, where the team has played since 1973. The proposed open-air stadium could be completed as early as 2025 with more conservative estimates calling for a 2026 or 2027 opening, depending on construction costs and the level of cooperation from both state and local governments.
However, the team’s lease expires after 2022, which could complicate matters if the Bills are ultimately forced to vacate Highmark Stadium. In the absence of an extension with Erie County (which would surely be their preference), the Bills could find themselves displaced as early as 2023, needing to find a temporary home while their stadium is being built.
In that scenario, historic Beaver Stadium, home of Penn State football, and Rogers Centre, where the Bills played annually as part of their “Toronto Series” from 2008-13, would be the most likely destinations, according to Thad Brown of News 8 in Rochester. While the Bills would consider a two or three-year layover as a guest tenant in Canada or Happy Valley, Brown confirms the team would hope to “avoid” that fate, if possible. Of the two potential host cities, Toronto would make the most sense geographically, sitting roughly 100 miles north of Buffalo compared to University Park, which is nearly twice that distance.
The Bills’ fan base, known colloquially as “Bills Mafia,” is among the most passionate in all of professional sports and should follow the team wherever they set up shop, particularly now that Buffalo, led by franchise quarterback Josh Allen, has emerged as a legitimate Super Bowl contender.