Let’s see. The offensive line can’t play, the defensive line are bums, Mark Brunell is finished, Tom Coughlin forgot how to coach, Dom Capers isn’t using people right, Fred Taylor is soft, Jimmy Smith is playing for a contract and Keenan McCardell’s career is already over. Those are some of the things I heard this week from fans explaining why the Jaguars won’t win another game this year.
Earlier people were explaining how bad the Redskins were, Deion Sanders was finished, Bruce Smith should retire, Norv Turner was an idiot and should be run out of town, Michael Westbrook is a wuss, Steven Davis is fat and happy with his new contract and Daniel Snyder is just a short multimillionaire who doesn’t know what he’s doing with his new toy.
This week Turner is a genius, Sanders and Smith will have their numbers retired as Redskins, Davis is going to the Hall of Fame and Snyder made all the right moves in the off season.
It’s the bandwagon.
Even Deion referred to it after the game, “There’s room for y’all on our band wagon,” Sanders said after the Redskins won a riveting game against the Buccaneers.
This is one of the great things about sports. The bandwagon. What does it actually mean anyway? When was the last time you saw a band on a wagon?
Fans jump on and off all the time. That’s their job. Wailing at their team’s ineptitude, applauding their success. “The tires are going flat on that bandwagon so many people are jumping on,” is a favorite derisive remark by other teams’ fans.
The bandwagon is what fuels a team’s fan base. When they’re winning, everybody wants to jump on, everybody wants to buy their t-shirts, and some even want to take credit. Those are some of my favorites. The bandwagon jumpers who say “I knew it all the time.” They were also the first one’s off yelling, “We stink!”
Sports is just about the only thing you can feel passionately about, one way or another, within the span of a few days, hours or even minutes, express your feelings as loud as you want, and in the end, it really doesn’t matter. Whether your team wins or loses isn’t going to make you live longer, make you more money or all of the sudden become handsome. But we scream and holler, paint our faces one week and want to burn our season tickets the next.
Some people talk about “true” fans, and what they’re expected to act like. Baloney. Act anyway you want. Love your team or hate them. Tell them they’re the greatest, or the worst. Immerse yourself in it. Jump on that bandwagon, and enjoy the ride.