Quiet crowd helped BearsCutler had it easy: Bills safety
By MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency
TORONTO - It was a case of the home field disadvantage.
Although the Chicago-Buffalo NFL game drew an announced crowd of 50,746 to the Rogers Centre, Bills safety Donte Whitner believes it was the missing Ralph Wilson stadium crowd and its vociferous fans that helped seal the Bills’ doom against the Bears.
The crowd that attended the 22-19 victory by the Bears on Sunday was pretty much split down the middle — the Bills fans sat on their hands, as did those who rooted for the Bears.
“It was quiet, which made it easy for him (Bears quarterback Jay Cutler) to make some checks out there and easy for him to tell his receivers what to do,” Whitner said. “If we were at home things might have been different with our crowd noise.”
In the books, the game went down as a home game for the Bills but Whitner isn’t buying that.
“We miss them (the Ralph Wilson fans),” Whitner said. “We might consider this a road game and the previous two. It’s like we’ve been away for three road games and we miss them.
“They energize the entire team and we missed them today. That’s no excuse to lose a football game but that 12th man does help.”
Whitner explained that the routine for a quarterback gearing up for a road game is to simulate crowd noise during a practice so that he can work on his checks when his teammates can’t hear him.
“But he didn’t have to do that today,” Whitner said of Cutler.
“It was so quiet, it was probably one of the most quiet football games that I’ve been involved with. It’s no excuse to lose a football game but I do miss our fans.
“We definitely need more support when we come up here. I don’t know if our fans in Buffalo really want to come up here and show their support because they want to keep the team in Buffalo. But we do miss them.
“That 12th man can push you over the edge in tight games, can make quarterbacks make mistakes, can make offensive linemen make mistakes which could possibly lead to turnovers and possibly lead to incompletions and things like that. So we do miss our fans.”