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History Lesson: Patriots-Bills

The storied rivalry between the Patriots and the Bills goes back so far that it predates their entry into the National Football League. The teams faced each other for the first time as members of the American Football League, in a preseason game on July 30, 1960 at War Memorial Stadium. Since then, the Patriots and the Bills have battled it out 111 times over a 55-year span in eight different stadiums. In those 111 regular and postseason games, the Patriots hold a record advantage at 68-42-1 and have outscored Buffalo by a total of 410 points, or 3.7 points per game.

Here's a quick look at each of those stadiums and the key matchup from each.

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NICKERSON FIELD

Years:1960-62

Games: 3

Record: Patriots 2-1

Points: Patriots 24.3, Bills 14.7

Historical Note: Located in Boston, Mass., seven different professional sports franchises have used the stadium. It is currently the home for Boston University Athletics.

Key Matchup: Oct. 22, 1961 - The Patriots score 52 points on the Bills, marking the most points scored by an AFL team at Nickerson Field.

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WAR MEMORIAL STADIUM

Years: 1960-72

Games: 14

Record:Patriots 7-6-1 (includes one postseason game)

Points: Bills 20.7, Patriots 19.9

Historical Note: Located in Buffalo, N.Y., War Memorial Stadium hosted two AFL Championships in its heyday.

Key Matchup: Dec. 28, 1963 - The Patriots defeat the Bills 26-8 in the AFL Eastern Division playoffs at War Memorial Stadium. It was the first playoff game for both franchises.

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FENWAY PARK

Years: 1963-68

Games: 6

Record: 3-3

Points: Bills 17.8, Patriots 15.2

Historical Note:Located in Boston, Mass., the storied stadium became the home of the Boston Red Sox at its opening in 1912 and is the oldest ballpark in the MLB.

Key Matchup: Dec. 9, 1967 - The Bills beat the Patriots 44-16 after snagging six interceptions and returning two of them for touchdowns.

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ALUMNI STADIUM

Years: 1969

Games: 1

Points: Patriots 35, Bills 21

Historical Note: Located in Chestnut Hill, Mass., the stadium, which opened in 1915, is currently the home of the Boston College Eagles. It was nicknamed the "Dustbowl" in its early years, when it was often used as a practice field, a baseball field and a track for BC athletics.

Key Matchup: Nov. 23, 1969 - After the Bills tied it up, 21-21, in the third quarter, the Patriots scored 14 unanswered points to edge out Buffalo, 32-21, in the only Patriots-Bills game played at the stadium.

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HARVARD STADIUM

Years:1970

Games: 1

Points: Bills 45, Patriots 10

Historical Note:Located in Boston, Mass., the stadium was built in 1903 and was the first athletic stadium in the US. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987, and its design was thought to influence the construction of later stadiums.

Key Matchup: Nov. 1, 1970 - Buffalo shut out the Patriots in the first half en route to a 45-10 victory in the only Patriots-Bills game played at Harvard Stadium.

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FOXBORO STADIUM

Years:1971-2001

Games: 31

Record: Patriots 17-14

Points: Patriots 20.8, Bills 19.1

Historical Note: The stadium was originally named Schaefer Stadium after the brewery that owned the naming rights. In 1983, Anheuser-Busch took over the rights and named the field Sullivan Stadium after the Patriots' majority owners. Once the Sullivans sold their interest in the team, the field was renamed Foxboro Stadium.

Key Matchup: Oct. 27, 1996 - Buffalo led the Patriots, 18-15, at the two-minute warning. The Patriots scored 14 points in the final minutes, winning 28-25.

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RALPH WILSON STADIUM

Years: 1973-Present

Games: 42

Record: Patriots 26-16

Points: Patriots 22.7, Bills 17.6

Historical Note: Upon its opening in 1973, the stadium was originally named Rich Stadium after Rich Products, a Buffalo-based food product company, who bought the naming rights for $1.5 million. When the deal expired in 1998, Rich didn't care to pay for the increased rights fees, which would've brought the price up to NFL standards, and the field was renamed Ralph Wilson Stadium after the Bills founder.

Key Matchup: Sept. 30, 2012 - The Patriots overcame a 21-7 lead in the third quarter, outscoring the Bills 45-7 on six straight touchdown drives, winning 52-28.

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GILLETTE STADIUM

Years:2002-Present

Games: 13

Record:Patriots 12-1

Points: Patriots 29, Bills 16.6

Historical Note:Located adjacent to where Foxboro Stadium used to stand, Gillette Stadium is currently the home of the Patriots and the New England Revolution. Since its opening in 2002, Gillette Stadium has sold out every Patriots home game. This past offseason, several upgrades were made to Gillette, including the creation of the DraftKings Fantasy Sports Zone, the Cross Insurance Pavillion and the Optum Field Lounge, where fans can watch the game from field level in the South End Zone.

Key Matchup: Jan. 1, 2012 - After falling behind, 21-0, in the first quarter, Tom Brady rallies the Patriots, who scored 49 unanswered points en route to a 49-21 victory.

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