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Bengals put Buffalo wings sent from Bills to perfect use

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If you formed a National Food League, where NFL cities competed based on their city’s signature dish, Buffalo would be a perennial playoff city with a championship legacy rivaled only by Kansas City and New Orleans.

Which is why it was such an awesome gesture when the Bills — understanding the role the Cincinnati Bengals played in eliminating the Baltimore Ravens and allowing Buffalo to go to its first playoff game in 18 years and ending the longest playoff drought in professional sports — sent over enough Buffalo wings to feed a small army.


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The team arranged for a local restaurant to ship 1,440 wings, 90 pounds of celery, 30 pounds of carrots, six gallons of blue cheese, nine gallons of the Western New York religious experience that is Duff’s Wing Sauce, “and a ton” of thank yous to the Bengals.

What on earth could just one football team do with all that food?

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And this is where it goes from a cool gesture to an early candidate for the best feel-good story of the year.

The Bengals took those wings to the Children’s Home of Cincinnati, where safety George Iloka helped serve the food, along with some Bengals gear, to 30 students at the center’s high school for students with autism.

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And so a promise made on New Year’s Eve was fulfilled exactly as advertised.

Alyssa Duff of Duff’s in Buffalo told WCPO-TV in Cincinnati, “It’s incredible. It’s more of a pipe dream. When it first started, I know the announcement came from the Bills. We were just like, ‘We had to get the wings here. How are we going to do it?’”

The answer was fairly simple — a good old-fashioned 400-mile drive.

This isn’t the only gesture that grateful Buffalo fans have made toward their unexpected benefactors in the Queen City.

Fans raised more than $315,000 for Andy Dalton’s charitable foundation.

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There’s a touch of irony in the Bills thanking the Bengals for sending them to the playoffs, since they wouldn’t have needed Cincinnati’s help had Buffalo not lost at Cincinnati in Week 5.

But never mind that. The Bengals beat the Ravens in Week 17, the Titans beat the Jaguars, and the ensuing four-way tie at 9-7 between Buffalo, Baltimore, Tennessee and the Chargers shook out in such a way as to make the Titans and Bills the playoff teams on the tiebreakers.

And for that, there was a Buffalo wing dinner enjoyed by a special group of teens and a lot of money was raised for a good cause.

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Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Birthplace
Boston, Massachusetts
Education
Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Nevada-Reno
Location
Seattle, Washington
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Sports




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