Important Dates in Bills History, presented by M&T Bank, helps fans recognize what's important. In the NFL, honoring milestones is important and on this date 57 years ago, the Bills issued the sale of the franchise's first season tickets.
Under the direction of founding owner Ralph C. Wilson, Jr., the Buffalo Bills entered the professional football arena on Oct. 28, 1959 as the seventh franchise of the American Football League (AFL). Although the Bills were not the first football team to take up roots in the city of Buffalo, Western New Yorkers fully embraced their new team. Standing at the front of the line to purchase his tickets when they went on sale at 9 a.m., was Arthur (Archie) Diemer of Attica, N.Y. By noon that day, over 3,000 tickets had been sold to the public.
Buffalo's first home game came on Sept. 18, 1960 against the Denver Broncos. Over 15,000 fans filled the stands to watch head coach Buster Ramsey's team take the field. Suffering a narrow 27-21 defeat, the Bills went on to finish the season in third place in the AFL East division, which at that time consisted of the Boston Patriots, New York Titans and Houston Oilers.
However, the Bills quickly rose to prominence around the AFL in 1964, when the team won its first of two consecutive AFL Championships. Led by new head coach Lou Saban and quarterback Jack Kemp, Buffalo posted an impressive 12-2 record during the 1964 regular season before defeating San Diego for the AFL title. Buffalo's good fortune continued in 1965 as the team marched into the AFL Championship. A rematch against San Diego, the Bills once again came out on top with a 23-0 shutout win.