Mar 25, 2014|
Former Bill Steve Tasker on owner Ralph Wilson
Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)
I'm like all of us it. A lot of bills has been stand on this fifth for a long time but. For those of us who played forum I knew him. You know we are open and didn't ever come. And now. I'm pretty set on set I am broken heart over. Because he's got not only I had a great deal of affection for personally but I lot of respect for a owed a lot of my success professionally and personally to him. And his organization. And I never forgot that and I never will so. I'm gonna miss him greatly. Or error fresh so it just seems. I think they've acquired its hero a lot. Right wasn't around you does it was like yeah he was. He was part of you part of the deal when your bill here back in the early when that we're going to Super Bowl every year in on this home games profit come down the field every Thursday. Watch practices kind of his habit come down we make fun of exe where these brown corduroy pants all that we you know let's keep its Intel. And he would joke with us and and you know only if it was him it says a lot about it when he got to the point where we were so familiar with him. He would allow us. To make fun of him and join in it in the joke going to be part of a locker room like that. You know he's just a hard guy not have a lot of lot of affection for. When we had heard too particularly when bill. Polian was the general manager when bill and round and bill always had he still does in their head coach bill had a short fuse. Ralph had shorter one. And Ralph. For a fat bigger explosion. So. It was fun just you know to hear. The fallout wants to while in the and the things those guys would argue and bicker about then it was always big stuff and Bill Polian was a guy that. The players knew that once you're on this team Bill Polian would fight. Literally. Throw fists toward. And Ralph. Was a guy. That. Was this and cut from the same cloth it was easy to be motivated to play hard. For Ralph. And this organization and build more. Or a bad day cruise front office people with Ralph bill Marr the John Butler and Ross was here. It was a hard. Hard if they were special appears we were down in the locker and that was that doesn't happen very real. Pena killer. Moments of your personal Iraq. Around that back. Although. The one I'll always remember the woman made it did clear meeting it was my second game here was a road game in new England and I didn't know. Anything I was second year player. I've been Houston oiler for. A year and a half and I met mr. Adams but Adams the owner of the orders once briefly and in a reception line. And I thought that's kind of the way it was in the NFL and then I get picked up off waivers mid season by buffalo. This view right after mark got the job and it was our from his first road game Marv Levy from my second game as a player I've been here for about a week eight days. I was sitting in the locker room. My game pants and T shirt getting ready to play. And about two hours before game this gentleman walked up these tax code tie trench covering code you know. Nice nice older guy came up today Steve rice wanted to hammer out we'll size wanna say welcome on board I hope it goes really well for you here. Good luck today hope hope you play well and I just wanna say welcome Alison thanks. And then. I'd go over a neighbor mouse is it will who's this Ralph Wilson got. Because what he owns the team. I agree kidney seems like a great help create houses every true I mean what that's him he goes yeah he's great. And from that moment on I knew it was going to be different here in buffalo that way than it had been. And and certainly that prove the case. Idea. We what do you know for all the things have happened to me personally my family. In Western New York. Say goodbye to a guy who had so much to do with how good it is in for me here my. That's pretty difficult today. So if you're right place. Before. This thing. It right we his perspective. It was just well that's the thing to an route took a lot of criticism here in buffalo when his team was over the semi against the dolphins and we couldn't get I couldn't get into the playoffs and he took a lot of heat because he would spend money that we all look forward doing the things that people say about owners everywhere. But I'll tell you this thing NFL is the 800 pound gorilla in professional sports leagues. And it's because a man like Ralph Wilson he's not the only one but he is certainly. The template for the kind of man in the kind of leader that is making NFL. The institution. On the American landscape that it is. I. That. It act. It okay. I think if you it's. Back in those days when we were winning games and occasionally. Occasionally when we went up big once. Great. To see. What it meant to him. He didn't even fake. His joy. He didn't put on. But France and how happy it made it. It may cut any emotions. To make it look good for any media or any fans. When the bills won a big game. He was it was as if was if he was the only thing. And sometimes. Sometimes the dark days maybe he was. This team mattered to him deeply for all the criticism. For all the things that you know all the bad years in the dark times in the back to back to a fourteen teams and this and let me tell you something they. Wasn't because he didn't care he cared deeply. And I'll bet. We'll have forget this story a couple of years ago people remember this. When the tech when the Kevlar balloon hit the transformer out of the corner of the property in the lights went out in the stadium. You know some vendor that balloon gets a way it arcs across the blows the fuse in the whole grid goes down. And when it happened on any they they came back on and went back off I think if I remember correctly and you know is as pretty frustrating for everybody and pretty soon people stirred you know turn around look at their routes by. Feature but shoulder Ralph Ferguson is is I knew that blame me eventually. Yeah well say he knew he signed up for. But he. You know he's a guy that usually take that but he helped you through tough decisions and great leadership. You know not only build this franchise into a in two part of the fabric here what it everything that is in Western New York. But this Lee goes after him and men like him a great. Debt of gratitude. And I am shocked that other sports leagues don't follow that template that these guys have laid out for the national football because. It is brilliant and it continues to be and I think that it's a legacy now that Ralph he's behind it. Others like him for the NF army and its its its pioneering export. And it's still on the cutting edge as well so I think. That says a lot about the men who run it.