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NFL spokesman: League not pushing Bills to host game Sunday

Erie County executive Mark Poloncarz had strong words for the NFL this afternoon.

Poloncarz was asked during a press briefing whether he had talked with the NFL about the possibility of the Bills hosting the New York Jets at 1 p.m. Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

"I haven't had time to talk to the NFL," Poloncarz shot back. "The NFL is a business. It's as simple as that, folks. ... If the NFL is trying to push the Bills -- and I don't think the Bills are trying to push -- I think if the NFL is trying to push the Bills to hold a football game, while we're in the middle of an emergency, shame on the NFL. Simple as that.

"We are in a major emergency. We've had eight deaths. We still might have people in their vehicles. We have roofs collapsing. We were just touring a facility where there were a couple hundred patients at a nursing home, and there was 7 feet of snow, with another 2 to 3 feet potential, on a flat roof. ... If the NFL is pushing this game to be held, shame on the NFL."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello responded in an email to The Buffalo News a short time later.

"As far as his comments, we are doing no such thing," Aiello said. "Public safety is the first priority. We are continuing to evaluate the situation and will make decisions as soon as possible.

Aiello went on to say that no deadline has been set that he knows of for when a decision on when the game will have to be made.

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