The Buffalo News -- February 12, 2000
By Allen Wilson
Bruce Smith said goodbye to the Buffalo Bills, but not before delivering a few parting shots.
Smith was reflective after he, Thurman Thomas and Andre Reed were released Thursday. After having a full 24 hours to think about it, Smith's disappointment turned to anger.
"This organization did not show any class in this situation," Smith said Friday from his home in Virginia Beach, Va. "This is an awful way to treat guys who have given so much not only to this organization, but to the community as well. The people that I feel the most sad for are the fans of Buffalo. I feel that they got robbed and cheated. This organization will have to live with the consequences of its actions."
I believe we are still living with the consequences of this action. The unceremonious dumping of 3 of the best players this league has ever seen. Buffalo went from a desirable destination for players & coaches to being the NFL's figurative (if not literal) Siberia. Having to completely over-pay marginal players to come here in free agency. High draft picks playing out their initial contracts to get away via free agency (if not forcing a trade before then). The Butler/Donahoe/Levy/Brandon/Nix carousel at GM making draft blunder after draft blunder. Retread coaches or middling coordinators put in charge of the team on the field. All of this eroding the fan-base.