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Old 07-06-2004   #1
mancunian
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Default NFL Fan and team rivalry

Here in the UK fan rivalry between soccer team can get out of hand - several of the so called fans arrange fights with rival fans before games.
Violence inside the grounds is virtually non existent now but outside if your not careful you can end up getting into a scrape.
Don't get me wrong this doesn't happen at every game every week - but it does occur.
So I got thinking whats it like at NFL games and how much segregation is their bewteen the sets of rival fans?

Who's the most disliked team in the NFL - and why?
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Old 07-06-2004   #2
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For example; you don't want to go all decked out as a rival fan to the Raiders or Eagles stadiums... could be a hazard to your health.
Violence isn't part of the mentality in Houston ... totally different atmosphere than you will find in other parts of the country. Only words are thrown at opponents at Reliant stadium... for now.
Texans don't generate much hate, being the new kids on the block and not being that big threat... for now.
Probably the most disliked team around the league is the Patriots because they are sitting at the top. With 32 teams and division rivalry, there is enough love/hate to go around to all the teams.
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Old 07-06-2004   #3
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Ah, people talk alot of smack in the stadium, but it's just that - words. Although, I did see a cowboy fan after THE first game - he was messed up pretty good, blood-wise. Not sure if he talked excessively or was just too drunk that it was self-inflicted... but that was a rare case.

Most are just good natured fans that know how to take the good with the bad.
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Old 07-06-2004   #4
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Well we don't have anythingin the NFL that compares to the 'soccer hulligans', but probably the closest team to fit that mold would be either the Eagles or Raiders fans. Veterans Stadium, the Eagles old home field, was the first stadium to employ its own jail on the grounds. That gives you the idea of the goings on in the NFL. The atomosphere in Houston is nothing like the previously mentioned teams. You might get some choice words thrown in your direction, but you won't have any need to keep your medical insurance card close at hand. As far as the most historically hated team goes I'd have to say the Raiders. The entire organization believes there is a conspiracy in the NFL against them.
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Old 07-06-2004   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by __V__
I have gone to stadiums all over the USA and have never seen chaos or dissarray. A few drunken retards here and there, but its nothing like a little league baseball game.
ROFLOL - Sad, but true.
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Old 07-06-2004   #6
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The NFL has had its share of ugly incidents over the years. Most of the time it's individuals doing stupid things and not wholesale riots, but as you would expect, alcohol is always a factor. The worst thing I have ever seen in person are the fights in the stands among opposing fans. This happened fairly frequently in the Dome (in the Pavilion especially and during prime time games when everyone was already drunk when they got there), and especially during games against division rivals Pittsburgh, Cleveland, and Cincinnati, but only when the Oilers were competitive of course. I was also witness to the whiskey bottle knockout of the NFL official (Armen Terzian) during the Vikings Dallas "Hail Mary" game back in the 70's. I have seen a few scuffles at Reliant the last two years but it was usually individual incidents (common to every NFL stadium) and not outlandish group misbehavior. I saw several Colts fans kicked out of Reliant in '02 for being a-holes to the people around them. That's typical and it generally happens on a small scale.

But on a larger scale there have also been plenty of group incidents lately that bother me. Hundreds of Giants fans pelted the Chargers bench with chunks of ice and snowballs a few years ago after a bad call by the referee. A Chargers coach was knocked unconscious as a result.

Then there was the incident in Cleveland a couple of years back where again, hundreds of fans pelted the field with (in some cases full) beer bottles in a game against Jax, resulting in the game being suspended for several minutes and both teams were evacuated from the field for safety reasons. This was repeated at New Orleans on a smaller scale the following night on a nationally televised MNF game.

There was also an incident either last year or the year before where security personnel had to use pepper spray on a group of unruly fans at Phillly or Washington (can't remember) and the pepper spray was spread by air handlers to the players bench.

A fan attending a game at Oakland was stabbed to death for wearing opposing team's gear. Oakland probably has the worst rep for treatment of opposing fans.

Many times the USA version of hooliganism is at it's worst during the post-championship celebrations on the streets of the winning cities (not just the NFL).

The attack by the meth-head White Sox fans is what I think people and players are most concerned about. NFL players are fairly well protected from that standpoint, but the goofball who sneaked on the field just after halftime of the Super Bowl proves that stadium security has its hands full.

The NFL is trying very hard to crack down on fan violence by revoking season tickets and working with local law enforcement agencies to issue heavy fines. It (group misbehavior) happens here, but not on what I would call a regular or predictable basis.

Last edited by aj.; 07-07-2004 at 06:31 AM.
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Old 07-06-2004   #7
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Something I think I should mention though is that fights at soccer stadiums are noticed a lot more because of the media. There aren't all THAT many fights betweens fans at soccer matches, but when they do happen the media starts hyping them up, and making it sound worse than it usually is (although there have been some bad ones).
Glad to see it doesn't happen as much in the NFL.
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Old 07-06-2004   #8
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A friend of mine attended the Eagles-Texans games in 2002 with Texans gear on. He said it was a little scary.

Honestly, pro football fans just don't have enough passion to get into too much violence. I attended an Oilers game (Falcons during the Oilers' big winning streak) in 1993 and sat on the first level. There were two women in front of me who never even looked at the field - they just chattted with each other the whole game.

In my section, the turnover of attendees from week to week is very high. Meanwhile, I leave every game without my voice. There's basically one loud fan in every section (I'm the one in mine). Everyone else is hanging out at the concesssion stand and telling each other ridiculous sports legends like that Texans were allowed one draft pick in 2001 and passed up Michael Vick. RME.

I'm not bitter or anything.
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Old 07-07-2004   #9
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I went to the Saints/Texans game last year here at the Superdome wearing my Jamie Sharper Jersey and a Texans cap. There was a whole lot of trash talking before I even got in the stadium. It was great!!!!! There was never anything close to out of hand just good ol fashioned, drunken, smack talkin. You just gotta keep your head on straight and remember you're on opposing turf. I went with ten other friends who all had on Saints gear which made it even more interesting with what I was wearing. lol
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Old 07-07-2004   #10
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I had a great game day experience at the Superdome.
My very first Texans game was the very first preseason game in New Orleans. I along with friends was headed over to the dome, and along came these two cool dudes .. Saint fans .. they were decked out in Saints gear head to toe.. jerseys, pants, caps, chains dangling, etc. .. they looked like they could have played on the team ... that or rappers. :0)
Me .. in my Texans shirt, sassy shorts and Texans visor. They offered me an escort to the game.. so I went in with these two .. arm in arm..
got some strange looks.. but it was a great photo op ...
Love New Orleans.. love the peeps over there. Always a fun place to visit.
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Old 07-07-2004   #11
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Who's the most disliked team in the NFL - and why?

Definitely the Raiders fit into that catagory. There are a lot of Cowboy haters out there also, not just TEXAN fans either! Fans are getting sick of the "America's favorite team" tag that they wore so proudly during their hayday.

I truly believe the Jags are one of the NEWEST hated teams in the NFL. They just seem to tick folks off! They play dirty, like the Raiders, so that's probably why.
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Old 07-17-2004   #12
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I have season tix in a friendly section near the top and saw no problems with opposing fans except for trash talking. The one exception being last year when the Titans came to town. Some moron at the front of the section was waving a Titans flag blocking everyone's view. For some reason myself and the other fans weren't too happy that day and soon found ourselves throwing food and trash at the guy. His retalliation was to turn to us and wave his stupid flag in our faces, only problem is that there was a security person looking straight at him when he did it. He was escorted out of the stadium much to our delight...the best is that no Texans fans got in trouble for throwing stuff at the guy. I hope he comes back for more next season.
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