The Buffalo Bills were founded in 1960 as the seventh team to
be admitted to the new American Football League. The Bills first
president was Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. The team was predominantly
defensive while the league featured offensive teams. After
recording four average seasons in the AFL, the team won the
Eastern Division in 1964 under head coach Lou Saban. The Bills
beat the San Diego Chargers in the 1964 AFL Championship Game
and the following season defended this victory. Saban won top
coaching honors, and Jack Kemp was named the league’s most
The Buffalo Bills joined the NFL in 1970 following the
AFL-NFL merger. Before the merger, the Bills drafted O.J.
Simpson who went on to become Bills leader in rushing each of
his eight seasons (1969-1977). He became the first running back
in NFL history to top 2,000 rushing yards in a season and set a
single-season record when he ran for 2,003 yards in 1973.
Simpson is still the Bills career record holder with second in
rushing yards (10,183), fifth in scoring (420 total points) and
ninth in receptions (175). He also acted in motion pictures.
Saban departed from the team in mid-season 1976. His departure
from the team made the Bills sluggish and dropped to the bottom
of the AFC East, where they stayed for the rest of the 1970s. In
1980, the Bills under the guidance of new coach Chuck Knox beat
their competitors Miami Dolphins for the first time in 11 years
in their season opener and headed to win an AFC Eastern division
title. The following season they lost their title to the
Dolphins. The team’s second recession came in 1980s with six
straight non-winning seasons. However, Jim Kelly joined the
Bills for the 1986 season and Marv Levy took over the coaching
reins. Jim Kelly went on to become Bills all-time leading passer
with 2,874 completions and 35,467 yards and Marv Levy went on to
become the only coach in the history of NFL to lead his team to
four Super Bowl appearances in a row. In his 11 full seasons led
his team to eight postseason appearances; five conference
championships, winning four of them. Levy was inducted into the
Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2001. Levy's teams in the late
1980s and 1990s were geared by quarterback Jim Kelly, running
back Thurman Thomas and defensive end Bruce Smith.
The Bills play their home games in Ralph Wilson Stadium.
Ralph Wilson is the founder of the franchise and the only
president in the history of the club. He is one of the oldest
owners, in terms of longevity, in the entire pro football world.
The team was named
represent the American scout, guide, and showman William
Frederick Cody, who was known as Buffalo Bill for his ability to
Check current listings for
NFL Playoff tickets of