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Doug Baldwin: 'I was moved to being a Buffalo Bills fan'

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NEWARK, N.J. -- There aren't many Buffalo Bills fans around Pensacola, Fla.

New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins, Jacksonville Jaguars ... All those teams make sense for folks in Florida's panhandle.

But a Bills fan grew up there, was thrilled by the K-gun offense there and got taunted about four straight Super Bowl losses there.

On Sunday, he'll have a chance to win the Super Bowl himself.

"I remember watching Thurman Thomas and Andre Reed play, and to be able to play the game at that level now is just unreal for me to think on," Seattle Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin told me today at Super Bowl Media Day in the Prudential Center.

Baldwin, a 25-year-old Stanford grad, was too young to remember the Bills' Super Bowl run, but he latched onto them because he was a pee-wee running back who adored Thomas' style.

"I was moved to being a Buffalo Bills fan," Baldwin said.

In the heady days when Jim Kelly and Dan Marino battled for the AFC East crown each year, Baldwin took a lot grief for his allegiance.

"It was frustrating," Baldwin said. "As a fan, I got attached to the players and the team.

"My uncle was a big Dolphins fan. We'd go at it all the time. But it was a friendly rivalry within our family."

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About the reporters

Vic Carucci returned to The Buffalo News as a Bills beat reporter in September. Carucci covered the Bills for 17 years before joining NFL.com as a columnist in 1999. Prior to rejoining The News, he spent three years as a senior editor for the Cleveland Browns.

Tim Graham returned to The Buffalo News in 2011 after covering the NFL for three years at ESPN and for one year at the Palm Beach Post. Before that, the Cleveland native spent seven seasons on the Buffalo Sabres beat for The News and was president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.

Jay Skurski joined The News in January 2009. The Lewiston native attended St. Francis High School before graduating from the University of South Florida.