TINSMAN: Patriots players surprised fans took over FedEx Field

Brian Tinsman
October 06, 2019 - 10:07 pm
Patriots surprised by fans taking over FedEx Field

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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The beleaguered Washington Redskins fans who went to FedExField on Sunday knew long before game time that they would be emotionally and perhaps physically outnumbered.

Metro trains were packed with No. 12 Brady jerseys. The parking lots (or “pahking lots”) were filled with navy blue, with scant smatterings of burgundy and gold.

This has been the trend for years, particularly against teams with national fan bases, and the 0-4 start didn’t help. Nobody was surprised by the fan demographics today, except for maybe the Patriots players and coaches. 

Even they were surprised how loud Pats fans could be on the road. Head coach Bill Belichick was so taken aback in the post-game press conference that he gave a multi-word answer.

“It was amazing. Oh my god, there were so many Patriots fans there,” Belichick said. “It was surprising and overwhelming. It was great to see them. Appreciate the support from all our traveling Patriots fans. Or maybe they are from here, I don’t know. 

“It was great to see them. It was awesome.”

Pats receiver Josh Gordon put a highlight stiff-arm move on Quinton Dunbar during the game, which drew a roar of approval from the crowd. After the game, he was a bit puzzled by the reaction.

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“Most definitely. It was confusing because I would say it felt like a home game,” Gordon said when asked if he could hear the fans. “It was just like Foxborough, to be honest. It’s great to have that support, our fans traveling. 

“Maybe we’ve got some converted Redskins fans. I mean, it was awesome, nevertheless.”

Tom Brady, who passed Brett Favre on the career regular-season passing yardage list, has seen almost everything in his career. But even the unflappable future Hall of Famer recognized the absurdity of the fan support in D.C.

“That was ridiculous. That was pretty amazing. It felt like a home game,” he said with a broad smile. “Right from the time we got to the team hotel yesterday afternoon until we ran in (to the tunnel) after the game, that was pretty sweet.

“We appreciate all of the support down here, and it’s good to come down here and get a win in front of them.”

Home-field advantage has been a hot topic around the team for years, to the point where there isn’t much more that people around here can say.

Maybe with the message coming from the opposing team, it will hit closer to home.

Brian Tinsman has covered D.C. sports since 2011, both from the team marketing and skeptical fan perspectives. Tweet your criticisms @Brian_Tinsman.