Friday, January 17, 2014

Day 292: Twelfth Man Blues for the Broncos

The all-important 12th Man is something most professional football teams count on. Really... what's the sense of home field advantage if your fans can't do their part to help you win? If you're not quite sure what I'm talking about, think about the loudest cheering you've ever heard. That's the 12th Man. It's that extra something that makes it difficult for visiting teams to communicate plays and it generally throws (or is supposed to throw) them off their game.

Some stadiums are louder than others—I'm guessing it depends on the configuration of the field. If a field has overhanging canopies or aluminum bleachers, shit gets real loud, real fast. I've been to Gillette Stadium for a Patriots game and one end of the field is open and I swear, all the sound flies out that end. It never sounds really loud in that place and it kind of bums me out a bit.

But then you have places like CenturyLink Field in Seattle and Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. These two arenas lead the way as the two loudest crowds in the NFL and both held the Guinness World Record for loudest crowd noise at some point this past season. And Seattle's rowdy fans actually registered on the Richter scale during one game.

Other teams need to go a step further with their home field advantage because maybe they don't trust their 12th Man to show up. Understandable in Denver where they're probably all stoned. The Broncos organization is so nervous that their fans will be out-cheered, they've limited the ticket sales to exclude certain states—Massachusetts being one. Basically they want Sports Authority Field at Mile High to be a sea of orange with not a Flying Elvis or Tom Brady jersey to be seen.

An article by Mark Kiszla from the Denver Post referenced the 2006 AFC Championship when the Broncos hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers. Swarms of Terrible Towel-wielding Steelers fans descended on the stadium, essentially negating home field advantage for the Broncos and shaking up veteran sissies players. In the article, former defensive back, John Lynch recalls walking out for a pre-game warm-up to a sea of yellow and being ruined for the entire game.

Now here's where I call bullshit. Are you telling me that Denver Broncos' psyches are so fragile that they need to limit what fans can attend the game? Sounds like a conspiracy to me. Sounds like Tom Brady and company need to march in there and kick some of that orange ass. Sounds like poor wittle Peyton Manning and Wuss Wes Welker need their blankies to comfort them in the big, bad football world.

Get over yourself, Denver.

No comments:

Post a Comment