by Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page

We are counting from 99 to 0 to determine who’s the best Buffalo athlete to wear each number.  It’s Buffalo Sports By The Numbers here on Buffalo Sports Page.

We’ll have a new number and athlete every day this summer.  Each story also includes reaction from the Buffalo Sports Page staff, and a way to catch up on numbers you’ve missed.

After every 10 numbers, a Sylvester & Peck On Sports podcast will feature Budd Bailey and the guys reacting to the selection.


Tom Day, Bills. “Tippy” spent seven years as a Bill, and was an excellent defensive end during that time in the 1960s. He also was something of the center of the locker room, quick with a joke and a laugh. Day wore #88 for three seasons – winning two AFL crowns in that uniform. Others: Pete Metzelaars, Bills; Reuben Gant, Bills.

Paul Peck’s Digit Discussion:  His teammates on those Bills AFL Championship teams rave about how Tom Day was such a dominant player on the defensive line of a great overall defensive unit.  So there’s nothing wrong with Budd’s choice.  But for me, the choice at #88 is Metzelaars.  The Bills alltime leader in tight end catches, yards and touchdowns was the exact right player to compliment all of Jim Kelly’s weapons.  Plus, he was a great blocker for Thurman Thomas.  Day was great, but Metzelaars is the greatest tight end in the team’s history.

Missed any of the previous numbers from 99 to 89?  Visit the Buffalo Sports By The Numbers section on the home page.

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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