The 12th Man: The Bills Chefs
Every weekend YNN is taking a look at the 12th Man, the Buffalo Bills fans who go above and beyond. This week, YNN's Ryan Whalen spoke with two fans who never go to a game on an empty stomach.
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Derrick Norman's and Richard Peterson's friends call them Pooh and Norm.
"We're the Buffalo Bills Chefs! Tailgaters," Peterson said.
The amateur chefs run one of the biggest tailgate parties outside of Ralph Wilson Stadium.
They grill ribs, chicken, burgers and hot dogs. They fry fish and cook an array of sides. On any given Sunday, they'll cook at least 100 pounds of food.
"We usually tell people if you're coming to our tailgating, don't eat anything after Friday at midnight," Peterson said.
They cook it on an oil drum that's been modified into a grill.
"I hate gas grills," Peterson said. "I like to cook with charcoal. Me and gas grills don't get along."
"It seems like every year it's getting bigger," Norman said. "We add on something every year."
Even when the Bills are away, Norman and Peterson still bring the grill out to cook for their friends, including Norman's co-workers, a group of hungry Buffalo Firefighters.
"It's pretty amazing," firefighter Don Woodhull said. "I pulled up this morning at 7 a.m., and they had the smoker out here. It's awesome. "
But it's really about Sundays at the Ralph for Pooh and Norm.
"From the tailgate right up to the game, everything's about equal, the whole day. But the next day, we kind of sleep in," Norman said. "We're tired."
When they head in for the game, they keep the hats on. Peterson said Norman was hesitant the first time he suggested it.
"Now I can't get him to take the hat off," he said.
After the Bills' players are announced, the two run from the top of their section all the way down to their first row seats, giving everyone high fives along the way.
"Aw man, it feels like I'm on the team," Norman said. "It feels like I'm back in high school ready to come out and play a game. Everybody's cheering you on. It just brings back memories like I'm out there playing with the Bills."
And during the game they have their chant.
"If the Bills score, they put us on TV," Peterson said. "I'll get down in front of the camera and put my hat back and go, 'Who you with?' "
"And I'll go, 'The Bills,' " Norman said.
They said they look forward to Sunday all week long.
"You know, where else would you rather be?" Peterson said. "I took that from Marv Levy."