Were the Bills a little too liberal with their sound board on Sunday? If they were, they may be hearing from the league.
Pro Football Talk wrote early Monday morning that "on multiple occasions" Ralph Wilson Stadium's third-down train horn blared loudly at times when perhaps it should not have.
PFT reported in August that all teams were sent a memo regarding video board and crowd noise policies. The timing made sense as the Falcons had just been caught using artificial crowd noise in 2013 and 2014 and were docked a fifth-round pick and $350,000 as a result.
"The home team is permitted to play audio while the visiting team is on offense and the play clock is running," the memo read, per PFT. "The audio must cease by the time the play clock reaches 20 seconds, or when the visiting team’s offense reaches the line of scrimmage, whichever occurs first. Pursuant to this policy, the visiting team’s offense is considered being at the line of scrimmage when the center touches the ball."
PFT writes that the horn sounded multiple times when the Patriots used their no-huddle offense. Whether or not the Patriots made an official complaint to the NFL, the league would have taken a look at what the Bills did with their public-address system audio. All teams, by rule, have to submit a recording of their video board feeds and their PA sound by Wednesdays after games.
Two plays into New England's 40-32 win over the Bills on Sunday, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was forced to call a timeout after he had difficulty communicating to his teammates on the field due to the crowd noise. During the team's next drive, after a 36-yard completion to tight end Rob Gronkowski and a Julian Edelman touchdown three plays later, the crowd noise was significantly diminished.