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New-look Billy Buffalo shocks many Bills fans

Without much warning, the Buffalo Bills gave their mascot a serious face lift and filmed a fairly amusing video of the process.

When Billy Buffalo led the charge out of the locker room before Sunday's preseason loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, Twitter erupted with analysis of the furry motivator-ombudsman's new features.

And, despite a few approving voices - most notably Bills mega-fan Pancho Billa - the majority of fan reaction was that of bewilderment, mockery and a little anger.

In fact, there were many profane tweets that can be softened to "the new Billy Buffalo looks rather wimpy."

Jason Ballok, who wore the Billy Buffalo costume from 2006 to 2011, offered a more measured response.

"Initial reaction to new 'characters' are usually negative and will ease up over time," he explained. "Overall I think they did a good job. The hump had to go and smiles are contagious. The kids will love refreshed Billy and the adults who don’t will always have the Mafia."

[Quick editor's note: Wasn't the purpose of refreshing Billy Buffalo to make him look less thicc?]

The previous iteration of Billy Buffalo was introduced for the 2000 season, the first of the Bills' 17-year-long playoff drought.

Superstitious Buffalo football fans will hope that this peripheral change - which has nothing to do with a shaky offensive line, uncertain quarterback situation and still-looming running back legal drama - won't be a harbinger for things to come.

Email: btsujimoto@buffnews.com

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