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Former Buffalo Bills Fred Smerlas, Doug Flutie Part of Super Bowl ‘What If’ Series

January 30th, 2014 at 2:00 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

Two former Buffalo Bills players were featured in ESPN's "Wish You Were Here" series, which featured some of the best players in NFL history never to play in the Super Bowl.

Doug Flutie was part of the last Bills team to have a shot at the Super Bowl. He quarterbacked the team to a Wild Card berth in 1999 but was mysteriously benched in favor of Rob Johnson for the Bills' trip to Tennessee. The Titans completed the Music City Miracle that day to eliminate what, with Flutie, might have been a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Flutie ended his career with the New England Patriots, but they were upset in the playoff just prior to his retirement.

'US Open 2009 169' photo (c) 2009, Edwin  Martinez - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Fred Smerlas' case is even more tragic. He was a mainstay for Buffalo at defensive tackle for a decade. He made a few playoff appearances with Buffalo, but he was cut just prior to the 1990 season. That, of course, was the year the Bills made their first of four straight Super Bowl appearances. He was picked up by the San Francisco 49ers, who had a shot to play the Bills in Super Bowl XXV. But they were upset at home in the NFC championship game by the New York Giants.

Other players featured in the series include Barry Sanders and Earl Campbell.

Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Bills, Doug Flutie, Football, Fred Smerlas, New England Patriots, New York Giants, NFL, san francisco 49ers, Super Bowl, Titans

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