When going to any stadium in Florida (this completed my triple crown of Florida football stadiums) you are always surprised by one thing. How many Bears fans attend the games and how well the Bears fans travel especially to Florida games. When riding up to EverTrade Stadium no one was expecting to be entering the Black Hole in Oakland where it isn’t “safe” to walk around in a visiting team jersey, but you expect the home team to be loud and when scanning the seats that the home colors would be in the majority. This was not the case on Sunday.
The only home field advantage the Jaguars had during the game was the HEAT! Even though there was a good breeze inside the stadium it was extremely warm, so it was good at least for us in the stands that the game started at 4:05! I’m not sure what it sounded like on TV but it was probably 60/40 Jags fans during the boring 1st half of the game. The only excitement for the Jags fans in the stands was when they got a few first downs so they could chant move the chains move the chains! Yes you could see the same excitement from the same senior citizens when I-26 is called and it completes their Bingo card! From the tailgating to entering the stadium to our seats the Bears fans were much more excited and louder than the more senior crowd in Jacksonville.
The stadium from the upper deck has great views of the St Johns River and the bridges that cross it, but none of the matches the beauty of cheering for Peanut Tillman and Lance Briggs doing something that has never happened in NFL history when they both returned INT’s for TD in consecutive weeks. After making Blaine Gabbert look average in the first half, the defense made him look like what he really is…..a draft bust. The key to the game though was except for a garbage time 25 yard run they totally shut down Maurice Jones-Drew which made the Jags one dimensional, but took the ball out of their best players hands and put into Gabbert’s. It also negated one of the Jags secret weapons and that is time of possession.
It didn’t take long in the 2nd half to have the home crowd exodus from the stands. After Lance Briggs ran back his INT for touchdown the stands were almost entirely Orange and Blue! LET’S GO BEARS was heard all day throughout the stadium, but it really felt like Soldier Field South for the entire fourth quarter while touchdown after touchdown after touchdown after Allen didn’t look like he wanted to score a touchdown! While sitting there in the first half I was thinking, great another low scoring Bears win while I attend a game, but I was extremely wrong with the 2nd half beat down the Bears administered to the Jags!
Leaving the enemies stadium is always great especailly when its all Bears fans after a win, and they are singing Super Bowl Shuffle and Bear Down Chicago Bears!! It was a great day ( especially 2nd half) to be a Bears fan!
When is the next road trip??