I watched the Broncos game at a pizza place while a roomful of Steelers and Raiders fans sulked and cracked Jesus jokes as Tim Tebow ruined their evening.
I drank one pint of Guinness per half and silently rooted for the Broncos. (Against the Steelers). I ordered another pint right before overtime, oblivious to the fact that I would take only one sip before Tebow put the knife in the Steelers and ended the game. Safe to say, the vibe in the pizza place went immediately south.
I won’t let the fact that a few of my friends are Raiders and Steelers fans stop me from making a blanket, generalizing statement. So, here goes.
It’s admirable when football teams pride themselves on grit and toughness, but the subsequent effect on their fans (who may or may not be gritty nor tough themselves) is slightly less cool. The fans end up taking on the personality of the team, which essentially turns them into assholes.
The Raiders and Steelers, both of whom have been burned by the improbable Broncos this season, are exhibits A and B in that department. Yesterday’s Tebow performance was a perfect storm, and since I live in northern California, I got to watch fans of both teams get riled up while I finished off my pint.
I watched a 9-year-old Steelers fan cry while his dad reassured him that Big Ben (quite the role model) would have them back next year.
Meanwhile, the scattered Raiders fans took their post-Carson-Palmer rage out on Tebow — lacing most sentences with vulgarities and curse words.
I’m sure the 9-year-old was too distraught to retain any of it.
Note: This is the only game my friend Mark picked correctly in his Spirit Animal Guide to the NFL Playoffs. I’m sure Tebow puts a lot of stock in spirit animals.