Ralph Wilson was synonymous with the Buffalo Bills, from the beginning of the franchise to Tuesday, when Wilson died at age 95.
Wilson was the last surviving member of the original American Football League owners, a group of eight innovators known as "The Foolish Club." He bought the Bills for $25,000 in 1959, and owned them for 54 years. In 2009, he was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Wilson is credited with initiating AFL-NFL merger talks with Carroll Rosenbloom, then owner of the NFL’s Baltimore Colts, in January of 1965.
In an obituary, Buffalo News reporter Mark Gaughan wrote that Wilson was the most influential sports figure in Western New York history, and that's tough to argue. The Bills' stadium is named after him.
Bills president Russ Brandon announced Wilson's death on Tuesday.
“No one loved the game of football more than Ralph Wilson,” Brandon said, according to the Buffalo News.
Although the Bills never reached the NFL's peak by winning a Super Bowl, theRead More »from Buffalo Bills founder and owner Ralph Wilson dies at age 95