Bills fans like to get drunk and act stupid, blogger says stadium is to blame

As an early entrant to the “Craziest Reasons of 2016 to Build a New Stadium” competition, I present to you SBNation Buffalo Bills blogger Matt Warren, who thinks the Bills need a new stadium because their fans keep getting drunk and acting stupid in the parking lot of the old one:

As Bills fans’ behavior continues to make national headlines for all the wrong reasons, that timeline might be moved up; the rationale holds that that behavior can be ameliorated by moving the stadium to a more controlled, downtown location.

“The rationale holds” — not sure whose rationale this is, but Mr. Straw Man has some ‘splaining to do about how a parking lot downtown is any more “controlled” than one out in the sticks. Warren adds that “a new downtown stadium could change not only the zip code, but the clientele in attendance at the game,” which seems to imply that he thinks people who attend football games at schmancy downtown venues don’t get drunk, or at least when they do are less likely to do backflips onto folding tables. Which, I haven’t spent that much time in Buffalo, maybe he’s right — but spending a billion dollars on a new stadium just in hopes that your doofus fans don’t end up on Deadspin seems like an awfully inefficient use of resources.


17 comments on “Bills fans like to get drunk and act stupid, blogger says stadium is to blame

  1. The Rogers Centre in Toronto? Is that a joke? It’s an outdated multipurpose cereal bowl stadium that the NFL would never put a team into. As Roger Goodell said a few years ago about Toronto, Toronto has stadium issues. No kidding.

  2. It appears he made an argument against enabling drunkenness, big time sports and public financing of professional sports stadiums. The title of the book “Beer and circus – how big time college sports has crippled undergraduate education” is derived from “Bread and circus”. The corrupt emperors of Rome provided free bread and circus to the masses to distract them from failing foreign and domestic policies. Apparently, the modus operandi today is to provide access to beer, etc.

  3. Passed though tailgaters at Gillette Stadium. Was pretty calm compared to some of the crap you see going on at the Ralph.

    Not sure a new stadium will equal less obnoxious drunks….

  4. The writer’s economic argument is fluffy, to say the least (I guess he has access to statistics on the income tax receipts emerging from Rich Stadium–or is he assuming it? Your call).

    More broadly, while the stuff on Deadspin is pretty over the top, boorish fan behavior at NFL games is basically standard at most stadiums nowadays. With games played at any hour of the night in winter and stretching without end due to TV requirements, a lot more NFL fans willing to take on that nonsense are those who see a season ticket as eight Golden Drunkenness Tickets.

    It might be a fair hypothesis that the relationship between NFL fans and alcohol would do more to explain behavior than NFL fans and the stadium.

  5. “and stretching without end due to TV requirements”

    It’s purely anecdotal, but I find a connection between the endless breaks in the action and the worse violence/idiocy in the stands.

  6. Well, since tailgating (in the drinking in the parking lot sense) is banned in Ontario, I think GDub is correct… fans would behave better in Toronto. But that is neither here nor there…

    I’m sure several (NFL funded) studies could show that bad fan behaviour at NFL games decreased in cities which funded new stadia, and probably decreased to a greater degree in cities which funded all the cost of a new stadium.

    But, as with most arguments put forward in favour of public subsidy for billionaires, there is no correlation between the two facts stated.

    The reason fan violence and boorishness drops (in general) at new stadia is because the cost of getting in increases dramatically… the drunken fans you saw in the corner stands at Giants stadium, the Vet or Rich stadium in 1980 can’t afford to get in to the new facilities by and large, and can’t afford the $7-10 beers when they do.

    None of this has to do with it being a new publicly funded stadium, of course. The NFL could solve this problem by mandating that the Bills increase ticket prices to the same level a new facility would require. That would do it… and it would also give them a good idea of whether a new stadium would generate any more revenue than the current one in Buffalo does if tried for one year as a pilot project…. over to you, Mr. Goodell….

  7. The video on YouTube of Bills fans having sex while tailgating before the game is a rite of passage in up-state New York. Leveraging said nefarious activities for financial gain is more New Jerseyan. Probably won’t work as well in Buffalo.

  8. If Buffalo coughs up some serious public stadium cash for a new palace, heck, I’ll go and get drunk and stupid in the parking lot to celebrate.

  9. Used to go to Buffalo once in a while from Southern Ontario for a game but too many drunks for my liking. As I got older and realized I don’t need to be with a bunch of drunken idiots I said no thanks. Would never bring my wife to a game at The Ralph, that’s for sure, with too many drunks.

  10. Let’s not forget the idiot who smashed into the power pole Friday morning. Left hamburg and orchard park without power until 1 in the afternoon. Disgusting.

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