ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Buffalo Bills kick off their season against the New York Jets in Orchard Park without the best fans in the NFL. But as it turns out, players on the field will hear the cheers from Bills Mafia while they’re on the field.
The gates will stay closed for at least the first two home games of the season. No cardboard cutouts will come to Orchard Park, instead, ads and other messaging will take over the first seven rows of seats. No mascots will hit the field… you won’t see the drum line… and there won’t be flag runners when the Bills score.
“No flag runners when we score, so it’s going to be… it’s going to weird,” Mike Adamek said, the director of game presentation at Bills Stadium.”That’s going to be weird.”
Mike Adamek is the director of game presentation at the stadium. He’s also the one who pushes the button that deploys the controversial train noise on Sundays. Now, his job is to make sure the players feel as normal as possible. He’ll keep playing the train noise, and will also play the Shout Song after the team scores. He’ll make sure the team kicks off to White Stripes, and will play the First Down bells and whistles.
And players will hear cheers from Bills Mafia the entirety of the game.
“It’s coming directly from the NFL and they worked in conjunction with NFL films to take a bunch of the ambient sounds from inside Bills Stadium here over the past couple years,” Adamek said. “They put together a 90-minute loop, and that will just play continuously throughout the game.”
And Adamek has some help.
If you’ve been to the stadium in the past three years, you’ve heard Clay Moden’s booming voice throughout the game. When Josh Allen and his crew hit the field on Sunday, they’ll continue to hear Moden’s play-calling for even more consistency.
“They’re professional athletes, but they’re people, so this is going to be different to them,” Moden said. “So, I’m here to represent whatever feeling I can to make it the most enjoyable experience.”
Moden said it’s an honor to sit in his seat and be one of the sole people bringing the energy.
“The guy who sits in that section over there who’s screaming every Sunday can’t be here to do that, I don’t know if I’ll scream for him, but I’m going to match that energy,” he said. “I’m going to feel what they’re feeling at home and put it here, and know that I’m responsible for that this weekend.”
Normally, these two guys see smiling fans in the stands and know they’ve done their job well. This year, they’re carrying a bigger weight. The weight of doing the job of the 70,000 passionate fans who would do anything to pack the stands on game day.
And Adamek needs YOUR help keeping the players pumped up. He’s asking Bills Mafia to send your hype-up videos to him, and he will air them in commercial breaks for the team. Submit a video here.
Kelsey Anderson is an award-winning anchor and reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2018. See more of her work here.