The Buffalo Bills story could become extremely aggravating over the next couple of years.
The way it's unfolding, it reminds me of 1974 when the Toronto Northmen of the World Football League were chased out of town.
I was 17 years old at the time and a football fanatic. I loved the Toronto Argonauts more than any other Toronto sports team but I was still a fan of the WFL moving into Toronto and giving me another option.
John Bassett Jr. was the owner, and to show Toronto and the football world that he meant business he went out and signed Larry Czonka, Jim Kiick and Paul Warfield who were winning Super Bowls with the Miami Dolphins.
Unfortunately the CFL cried foul and claimed the league was a Canadian institution that should be preserved so the government got involved.
The federal government prepared legislation to prevent the WFL from coming to Canada, and rather than get caught up in a huge steaming pile of "bureaucrap" and lawyers fees, Bassett moved the Northemen to Memphis where they became the Southmen.
At the time I was just a kid but it still bothered me. It bothered me that the government could/would step in and tell me where I could spend my entertainment dollar and it bothered me that I was being deprived of another brand of football.
I'm getting the same vibe right now regarding the Buffalo Bills, who today at NFL meetings in Philadelphia will seek permission to play one exhibition game and one regular season game in Toronto starting next season.
The Bills want to establish a foothold in Toronto as a method of guaranteeing their survival in the tiny market of Western New York. They feel by playing regular season games in Toronto, more Southern Ontario money will latch onto the franchise, including corporate sponsors who may support them permanently.
But already there's been some resistance from Canadians. BC Lions owner David Braley predicts this could be the beginning of the end for the CFL while CFL commissioner Mark Cohon has already contacted NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to voice his displeasure.
I have little doubt that the Bills move into Southern Ontario is only the beginning and eventually they could move here permanently and that's why there's resistance from those involved with the CFL, but there's no way this should be prevented from happening and there's definitely no way the government should get involved this time.
It's all a question of numbers. The Toronto Argonauts are lucky to draw thirty thousand fans to a game, but you can bet your ass the one game the Bills play here next season will be a sellout and if they ever moved here permanently it would become the toughest ticket in town.
We can only hope the the Argonauts would survive as a cheaper option for those who love football and those who love the CFL, but It's a simple case of "give the people want they want" and in 2007 Toronto wants to the NFL.
Back in the 1970's and early 80's the Argonauts played before sellout crowds of 55 thousand, but as time passed Torontonians lost interest in the CFL with its second rate players and laughable payrolls and stopped going to games.
No doubt the CFL is an exciting brand of football and most of us hold it close to our hearts, but that doesn't change the basic rule of supply and demand and the government should keep its nose out of it.
Toronto wants the NFL and Toronto is ready for the NFL and nothing should stop it from coming here except straight forward commerce.