Toronto will continue to play host to one regular-season Buffalo Bills game per year through 2017, QMI Agency has learned.
And tickets will be "significantly" cheaper, according to a source in the position to know.
The NFL's International Committee Tuesday morning in Atlanta approved the Bills' intention to extend its deal with the Rogers Centre, as QMI Agency first reported.
While a final agreement has not yet been reached between the Bills and Rogers Media, the source said the term will be for five years, the two sides are "very close," and "you can probably expect an announcement in the coming weeks."
From 2013-17, then, the Bills will continue to play one of their eight annual regular-season home games at Toronto's downtown domed stadium. Probably only one pre-season game will be part of the new contract, the source said.
The final regular-season game of the Bills' original five-year, $78-million contract with Rogers takes place Dec. 16 against the Seattle Seahawks.
The source said the extension will be "significantly" less lucrative for the Bills. As a result, NFL fans in Ontario and Western New York can expect ticket prices to be "significantly reduced." Rogers has received immense criticism for the high prices of tickets to Bills-in-Toronto games.
Both Rogers Media president Keith Pelley and Bills CEO Russ Brandon have said in recent months that the two sides were optimistic an extension would soon be reached.
In response to a request for a comment on this story, Brandon said in a statement:
"The International Committee's decision to approve the continuation of our games in Toronto is a crucial step in our ongoing efforts to regionalize our franchise. As we have stated on many occasions, the regionalization process remains vital to keeping our franchise strong in Western New York. We are continuing our discussions with Rogers Communications on a new deal and remain optimistic that we can come to an agreement in the near future."
When reached Tuesday afternoon, Pelley said:
"We are pleased with the International Committee's decision to approve a continuation of the Bills series. Now our attention will turn to trying to finalize the deal with the Bills."
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