Upset Bills Fans Donate $40K to Buffalo Visual Impairment Charity to Mock Refs

Fans are upset about referees not calling pass interference on Sunday in Buffalo's 33-27 loss in overtime to Tampa Bay

Bills fans watch a game between Buffalo Bills and the Jacksonville Jaguars
Bills fans watch a game between Buffalo Bills and the Jacksonville Jaguars.
David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty

They haven’t seen their 7-6 team win a game in the past two weeks, but at least Buffalo Bills fans have a sense of humor about it.

Upset about a seemingly obvious example of pass interference by Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Carlton Davis III on Buffalo receiver Stefon Diggs that occurred during a play that could have been a touchdown, Bills began donating to a Buffalo-based nonprofit that helps the visually impaired on behalf of the officials who refereed the Bills-Bucs game.

Most fans have been donating in $17 increments in honor of quarterback Josh Allen’s uniform number, but there have also been donations of $14 for Diggs and for $31 (the sum of Allen’s and Diggs’s jersey numbers), according to The Buffalo News. So far, Visually Impaired Advancement (VIA) has received more than $40,000 in donations.

“We thought this could be a great educational piece,” VIA Marketing and Communications Manager Samantha Burfiend told The News. “This is getting us back into the community. Maybe there is someone who’s visually impaired … and they can find us, and they can give us a call, and we can help them and support them, and using donations toward that support.”

With Allen nursing a left foot sprain and questionable to face the Carolina Panthers this weekend, Buffalo could really use some calls going their way from the officials in Week 15.

“We just have to really take it one day at a time because, No. 1, I’m not a doctor,” Buffalo coach Sean McDermott said of Allen earlier this week. “I just rely on what [head athletic trainer Nate Breske] and our training staff gives me … from a medical standpoint.”

If Allen can’t start on Sunday against the Panthers, former Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky will take over. With five teams at 7-6 in the AFC, the Bills don’t have much room for error considering the team’s 5-5 conference record and a matchup on the road next week against the conference-leading New England Patriots.

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