1 - Bills fans open wallets and hearts after Twitter poll buying
The Bills were in the lead of the @NFLonFox Twitter competition for the best fan base in the NFL. With just over an hour left, fans of the Tennessee Titans bought thousands upon thousands of votes from bots to win the poll and steal an appearance in the championship from Bills fans. Instead of getting upset, the Buffalo faithful decided to spend their money on something more meaningful than a Twitter poll.
One of those helping lead the charge is Shelby Waddle, wife of new Bills offensive lineman LaAdrian Waddle. Bills fans have already raised over $10,800 to the Nashville Children’s Alliance. The Nashville Children’s Alliance is a charity that works with children ages 3-17 and their families to cope with severe physical and sexual abuse.
Waddle has only been in Buffalo for three weeks, but is quickly learning about the Bills faithful. She wants to prove that Buffalo fans are number one in the NFL through their charitability.
Bills fans have previously come together to donate. They donated $400,000 to Andy Dalton’s foundation after he led the Bengals to a win over the Ravens in Week 17 of the 2017 season to send Buffalo to the playoffs for the first time in 17 years.
2 - Shaq Lawson: “We’re going to turn a lot of heads”
Shaq Lawson is entering his fourth year in the NFL and the last of his rookie contract. Lawson is one of the last holdovers from before Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane joined the club. Buffalo does have the ability to pick up Lawson’s fifth-year option, and have about a month to decide.
“I would love to stay in Buffalo,” Lawson said. “Buffalo gave me my first opportunity in the NFL and that’s my second home. I hope they pick it up. I enjoy the fans and it’s a football town and they all care about you. That’s the great thing about it, I would rather stay than leave.”
Lawson has totaled 76 tackles, 10 sacks, 20 quarterback hits and four forced fumbles through his first three years starting in 17 of 35 games. Lawson knows it’s his contract year which gives him extra motivation to succeed. For this season, his mindset is to go out and be the best that he could be.
“I’m looking forward to this year, I’m ready to come back and get ready for this 2019 season. It’s going to be a special season. I can’t wait.”
Lawson is currently in Arizona and recently finished up at the C.J. Fuller Foundation football camp in honor of his former teammate’s tragic passing after suffering complications from ACL surgery. Lawson was honored to keep his teammates name alive along with other players from the Clemson football program, including former Bill, CJ Spiller.
Lawson will return to Buffalo in a couple weeks with a new practice facility awaiting him. Lawson’s goal this season is for more sacks and to play in his first career playoff game.
“It’s coming, Coach McDermott preached it all last year,” he said. “This team is about to be so special and we’re going to turn a lot of heads this year.”
3 - Bills top tacklers in 2018
The Bills are returning three of their four top tacklers from last season. Shaq Lawson, Lorenzo Alexander and Harrison Phillips placed first, second and fourth by Pro Football Focus for the highest tackling grade. Players qualified by playing a minimum of 25 percent of a team’s snaps.
Lawson in his third season led the Bills with a grade of 81.6, narrowly edging out the 13-year NFL vet Lorenzo Alexander who finished with a 81.1. Phillips finished with a grade of 75.7 in his rookie season. Phillip Gaines had a 80.5 but signed a deal with Cleveland after being cut.