- In the final week of the 2017 season, Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals pulled off a miracle upset over the Ravens that sent the Buffalo Bills to the playoffs for the first time since 1999.
- On Sunday, Bills fans gave Dalton a huge standing ovation before their team’s preseason game against the Bengals.
- Fans of the Bengals and Bills have both participated in charitable giving close to the other team’s causes.
Fans of the Buffalo Bills are known to be a rowdy bunch, braving the cold Sunday after Sunday to jump through flaming tables during the tailgate and then cheer on their favourite team.
For that reason, Buffalo is usually a pretty unfriendly environment for visiting quarterbacks, but that was not the case on Sunday when the Bills hosted the Bengals for a preseason game – instead, Cincinnati QB Andy Dalton was met with a standing ovation from the home crowd.
A standing ovation they’ve been waiting eight months to give.
Buffalo loves you, Andy Dalton! pic.twitter.com/hmC5xzAt9t
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) August 26, 2018
The warm reception stems from Dalton’s heroics on behalf of the Bills in Week 17 of the 2017 season. The Bills were fighting for the final spot in the AFC playoffs, needing the Baltimore Ravens to lose to Cincinnati in order to end the longest postseason drought in the NFL.
The Bengals, who had already been eliminated from playoff contention themselves, pulled off a miracle, scoring a touchdown on fourth-and-12 from midfield with just seconds to play, sending the Bills through to the playoffs. The Bills could only watch from afar, in complete hysterics.
From Miami, to Buffalo, to New York City…
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) January 1, 2018
At the time, Bills fans showed their love for Dalton by donating to his charity, sparking a wave of goodwill that followed fandoms across the league. On Sunday, they got to shower Dalton in thanks in person, and Dalton returned the favour.
After Bills fans donated over $US450,000 to Dalton’s charity, Dalton, in turn, donated some of his money to the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, where he and his wife JJ made an appearance on Sunday morning.
Thank you, Buffalo. #CINvsBUF@jjdalton5 and the @ajdfoundation stopped by @RoswellPark for a ribbon cutting ceremony for their donation of a technology hub (with a surprise appearance from @andydalton14).
But they didn't stop there.
— Cincinnati Bengals (@Bengals) August 26, 2018
In a sport filled with rivalries, the relationship between the Bills and the Bengals and their fans is one of the best that football has to offer.
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