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Redskins, Bills Head North Of the Border


For the first time in team history, the Redskins will play a regular season game outside of the friendly confines of the United States.

This Sunday, they travel to Canada to play the Buffalo Bills at Toronto's Rogers Centre. It's about one hour's drive away from the city of Buffalo.

This is the sixth iteration of the so-called "Bills Toronto Series," which began in 2008 to court the Canadian fan base. In the regular season, the Bills are 0-3 in games in Canada, but all three losses were by decided by six points or less.

For some of the younger players on the Redskins, Sunday's game in Toronto is an exciting opportunity to play in an international setting.

"I'm excited because I've never been to Canada," fullback Darrel Young said. "I don't really know what to expect. I just found out the game was indoors. I have my passport. I'm not even sure if [the game] is in the same time zone."

Ryan Kerrigan admitted that he's never been out of the United States, so Sunday's game has plenty of firsts for the rookie standout linebacker.

"It's a good feeling and I'm excited," he said. "I've heard it's a pretty cool city, with big buildings and the uniqueness of its culture. My friends tell me it's like the New York City of Canada."

Kerrigan, an avid baseball fan, said that he was looking forward to seeing the Rogers Centre in person, after watching lots of Blue Jays games on TV.

He also noted that once the initial excitement wears off, it's down to football.

"It's not going to come down to where the game is," he said.  "It's going to come down to the 22 guys on the field."

Veterans like linebacker London Fletcher are focused on the task at hand: winning the game.

"For us, it's just another road game, so I really don't think it's that big of a deal," he said.

Head coach Mike Shanahan recalled coaching in several international preseason games, but Sunday's contest in Toronto would be a regular season first in his lengthy coaching career.

"I have never gone to an overseas game during the season, but 45 minutes from Buffalo? I don't consider that too far away," he said.

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