There are many factors that influence the outcome of a football game. It is impossible for him to point out one thing as the difference between winning and losing, especially in close games.
That being said, Lions fans helped make a difference Thursday night in Kansas City.
It was supposed to be a coronation, a celebration. A moment when everyone in the building commemorated the Super Bowl victory and channeled the feeling of a playoff game into a 1-0 start. This isn’t Los Angeles, where many Rams fans yawned in anticipation of unfurling banners and Bills fans flocked. It’s Arrowhead. He is one of the biggest and best home field advantages in football.
Thursday night wasn’t as big as usual, but it was a credit to the Lions fans who showed up early and made a lot of noise to support their team.
I noticed it the moment I stepped outside to watch NBC’s pregame show. Lions fans were gathered along the sideline behind the visiting team’s bench. Their voices grew louder as the game approached. “Let’s go Lions!” chants broke out.
How come the team didn’t notice that? How could they not take solace in the idea that he wasn’t playing the role of General Washington for Mahomes and the Globetrotters? When the Lions came out before the game (I know it’s easier said than done now) I noticed something in their demeanor. (At least I chose them to cover the spread.)
The Chiefs still had a chance to win the game. The absence of defensive tackle Chris Jones and tight end Travis Kelce was significant. More than that, the Chiefs had too many injuries of their own. There were too many moments where he was on the ropes and didn’t know how to fight back. There are too many players who need to step up and make a difference, and too many mistakes. They try too hard to be cute in short yards instead of just carrying the ball up the middle. There have been too many instances where Andy Reid hasn’t performed as well as he usually does even though he has extra time to prepare for games.
On Wednesday, when more and more Lions fans started showing up in Kansas City, we sensed a Lions takeover was coming. That was a surprise. It brings to mind a time before Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, when many believed the Broncos would win, and when Seahawks fans gradually and consistently took over the city. Ta.
No, it does not directly affect what happens on the field. Yes, there’s a difference between someone wearing a uniform, expecting a sea of red, and feeling something special that comes with discovering instead the endless waves of Honolulu blue.
It will be very interesting to see if this continues in the upcoming road games starting in Week 4 on Thursday night at Lambeau Field. There are a lot of Lions fans who have been waiting (and waiting) for a reason to embrace the team. Now it is. And their presence and voice can make a difference on the team.