November 15, 2008

Crowdgate - Butt Out

Have we really fallen so far, Redskins Nation? There’s one word to describe the now two-week-long hysteria over Crowdgate:


* FedExField is the largest stadium in the NFL. More seats equals more butts. Ours and theirs. Get used to it.

* Washington DC remains a city of transplants. There are always going to be fans of other teams putting their butts in our seats. Get used to it.

* Ever been to a game at FedEx Field? If you have, you know getting your butt in and out of there is a pain. Now put that game on a Monday Night. Figure the game ends around midnight. Know what time your butt is getting home? Neither do I, and that’s the point. But count on being the only car moving in your neighborhood except maybe Johnny Law doing his rounds.

* Checked your 401K lately? If you work for a living you feel like you’ve spent the last couple months retrieving soap in a prison shower. If your alarm is going to go off at oh-dark-thirty Tuesday morning, and some anonymous online schmuck is willing to pay you three times face for your two tickets, there’s a decent chance you’re not going to sweat checking the color of his NFL underoos.

But enough time wasted on peripherals.

Know why Steelers fans on Monday night were a factor? Because the Redskins played butt-awful offensive football. And because the entire team spent the first half looking gift horses in the mouth, extending a gilded invitation to the visitors to take control of the game.

This isn’t complicated.

If Jason Campbell hits a wide open Santana Moss at the goal line on the second offensive possession and the Redskins go up 10-0, know what you would have heard at FedEx?


If Carlos Rogers doesn’t drop the Redskins weekly “thanks, but no thanks” pick-six opportunity and they go up 13-3, playing as well defensively as they have since Richie Petitbone and his various combilations (anyone?) waddled RFK's sidelines, know what you would have heard at FedEx?


And if the Redskins had been the butt-kickers instead of the butt-kickees all night, know what you would have heard and seen from the “loyal opposition?”


Okay, so the Steelers fans were irritating. But please put it in perspective. If the game on the field rated an “8” on the Redskin Fan’s Great Scale of Irritations given enough missed opportunities to choke a horse, a bunch of visiting fans waving cute little canary-yellow towels rated maybe a "3."

The one substantive complaint might be that the Redskins had to use a silent count on offense a few times. Obviously you’d rather not have to do that on your home field. On the other hand …

1) It’s the NFL—you start working on silent counts in May.

2) The Redskins brought the problem on themselves by screwing up several golden opportunities to take a choke hold on the game early and make opposing fans moot. And mute.

Oh and before I forget … now that as a fan base we've spent so much time publicly wringing our hands over crowd noise, be assured the always classy contingent of Dallas fans planning to show up this weekend, as they always do when their team has a winning record, will take it as encouragement and a challenge to try to one-up the Pittsburghers.

As ye reap ... you know?

So, want this all to go away? Me too. More than I can say in polite company. Here’s what has to happen:

First and foremost, the Redskins have to play like they did earlier this season against Dallas—with a nasty disposition and butt-kicking attitude. By playing physical and smart football. And most importantly, by converting on opportunities.

As for the fans, you already know what to do; the only thing fans can do to actually impact a game. I’ll say it anyway just in case anyone’s forgotten. Be loud. Be loud at the right times. And if the Redskins should happen to be losing at some point, or even stumbling around shooting off toes like they did two weeks ago, don’t boo, don’t sit on your hands whining about the other teams’ fans, rally and scream for your team even louder.

You know, help them.

Don’t go thugging on fans wearing the wrong colors, either. We all know NFL cities where they seem to think that’s how one compensates for inadequate manhood—but that’s never been us. I’d like to think that being above that was something Redskins fans were proud of.

Forget the fans in blue Sunday night. If their team is smacking the Redskins around at some point, they’re going to be loud—just like Redskins fans are loud for their team on the road. And if the Redskins are doing the smacking, count on the Cowboy fans in attendance to be inconsequential drops in a 90,000-strong sea of fans wearing the right colors.

The Steelers fans got into the Redskins heads on the field, as evidenced by all the commentary in the days after the game. They got into the Redskins fans heads too, as evidenced by the last two embarrassing weeks of talking about it (which I now find myself grudgingly contributing to).

Kick them the hell out. I’m begging you.

Here’s a guarantee: when the Redskins become consistent winners again—which they appear well on their way to doing—opposing fans at FedEx, even those of good teams with passionate and mobile fan bases, will sit there quietly and take their medicine. The burgundy and gold tidal wave around them will allow zero room for interpretation as to whose house it is.

Forget the other sideshows. Be loud. Be consistent.

Be Redskins fans.

And as for the Redskins themselves … fellas, just win. Do that, and this kind of ridiculous, embarrassing sideshow will up and vanish like the proverbial fart in the wind.



WinSkins said...


Mark "Om" Steven said...

A man of few word.

I like it.

Sneaker15 said...

My name is Mike Street and I reached out to you some time ago about the Samsung/NFL campaign I've been working on over the past few months. I wanted to reach out to you thanks you for posting information about the campaign and let you know that voting is now open and we have several Redskins fans in the mix. We need your help in getting the word out to other Redskins fans about the voting at and how they can help their fellow Redskins fan win the commercial spot.

Here are a few examples of the Washington Redskins fans that made it through to the voting stage:

* Washington Redskins fan and Montgomery resident Kevin Bittenbender tells the story of how he sees the NFL as the "common denominator." Bittenbender, who just returned from his second tour in Afghanistan, relates how he used the game of football to find common ground with groups of Afghan children.

* Keith and Sharon Turner tell their story of how superstition has ruled their home every Sunday for the past 23 years. Mr. Turner is not
to be bothered while watching his beloved Redskins, but his children and wife have figured out that's the perfect time to ask for money
because he can't say no

* Hogettes Howard Churchill and Big Mac tell their story of how the Hogettes all came together to cheer the Redskins on during the Super
Bowl vs. the Denver Broncos, leading the cheers and producing a tremendous "roar." They feel like they helped the Redskins win the

WHAT: Fans can vote for other Redskins fans videos on The winning story will be turned into Samsung's
"The NFL: That's How I See It" fan Super Ad commercial that will air during the Super Bowl XLIII pregame show on February 1 on NBC. More than 400 NFL fans shared their stories of pregame rituals, defining football moments and football routines that have been passed down for generations.

WHEN: Nov. 20 – Dec. 3, 2008
WHERE: Visit to vote. WHY: Samsung and the NFL are giving fans the opportunity to share
their passion and stories surrounding America's favorite sport as part of this year's "Super Ad: That's How I See It" campaign.

Please let me know if you can post any of this information and encourage your readers to come to the site and vote for their fellow
Redskins fans and help them win and become the Super Bowl 2009 commercial. Go Skins!