The Buffalo Bills are proud to announce that John Lang, also known as "Bills Elvis," has been selected as the Bills nominee for 2022 NFL Fan of the Year award.
Lang, a Lockport Native, has been a season ticket holder since 1992 which is the same year his Elvis wardrobe came to be. He officially became Bills Elvis when he made a bet with a friend that he could get on national television by dressing up and painting an old guitar - and it certainly worked.
"I put 'Go Bills' on the front and then 'Squish the Fish' on the back of it," Lang said. "Then they had me on the broadcast, on ESPN, I think they even had me in the newspaper too. And everybody kept saying you got to do it again next week, so it grew all because of the bet."
"It's really fun being me, I really have a lot of fun with the whole thing," Lang added.
Since then, "Bills Elvis" has been in the stands, featured on television, and even officiated a wedding outside of Highmark Stadium before the January 2022 Wild Card Round Playoff game against the New England Patriots. But his love for the Bills came well before his famous game-day outfit did.
Some of his fondest memories growing up are watching Bills games with the rest of the Lang family at his grandparents' house in Orchard Park.
"I was just a little kid and I remember my grandparents yelling and running around the living room at the TV, and it was just some of my best childhood memories by far," Lang said.
Bills games have been part of the Lang family for generations, and now Lang now has his wife Therese, daughter Abbey, and son Johnathan in on the fun. Whether that's going to games or hosting tailgating parties for a crew of 50-75 people at 7 a.m., the Langs are always ready to cheer on the Bills.
"When I first started with them, I was the young guy and now I'm the older guy," Lang said. "It's really great camaraderie and great fun now. The grills are going bright and early, the music's going, and it's a great day."
Dion Dawkins and the Bills surprised Lang, who came Elvis ready with guitar in hand, with the exciting news at Highmark Stadium on Tuesday afternoon. Congratulations John!
"Out of all the great Bills fans and the Bills Mafia, it means everything," Lang said. "I'm a giant fan, but there are so many other great fans out there as well. So, to be thought of like this, it really means a lot."
This is the third year of the NFL Fan of the Year program, which celebrates extraordinary fans who inspire others through their love of football. As the Buffalo Bills nominee, Lang will be traveling to Arizona for the Super Bowl in February and attending NFL Honors, where one nominee from one of the 32 clubs will be crowned the 2022 NFL Fan of the Year.