Posted 29 October 2012 - 03:01 PM
Some thoughts from the game, which my wife and I were at =)
I think football has a real shot in London. There was an energetic crowd pre-game, with lots of fun loving NFL fans on the train. The most amusing thing we found was asking people how they chose their teams:
- a little kid was a bears fan because 'he likes bears'
- a guy was a cardinals fan because he just had to pick a team and chose them
- a guy was a falcons fan because his father went to georgia one time and brought him a hat
one thing they didn't seem to understand was when to cheer - the stadium was DEAD quiet during pre-snap reads by both QBs and I was really surprised that the pats weren't running more hurry up. it seemed like the perfect time to exploit the fact that an away game was essentially a home game.
the number of confusing penalties didn't really help - we had a few people around us very confused by the illegal touching out of bounds and the 'over the line of scrimmage' calls, both of which could be explained fairly easily. i think it was fun for the majority of guys that just went to see the game as a sort of 'cool thing to do', i met one guy in line for beer who was excited that there had been so many touchdowns scored in the game (he knew basic rules and little else).
that said, everyone we mentioned it to seemed excited by the prospect of a real team in london, although everyone wondered how it would work logistically. and, despite the nfl pushing it hard, we checked a few papers and there was only one little mention of the game - a 2 sentence blurb among a dozen articles about english football.
i didn't think it would be a big deal that the rams were the home team, but they actually seemed to spend a bit of money on trying to convert new fans - they had flags for the fans to wave and signage around the field and around the stadium. but, around the city, i didn't see a single rams jersey (apart from at the stadium) - and i've seen a ton of people in patriots gear. we went to the sports cafe near piccadilly after the game and there was a large number of patriots fans talking about the game - both brits and americans.
all in all, it was a really fun experience, and we have some fantastic pictures. and we got to see a win!
* sorry for the lack of caps in the majority of the post, the british keyboard has a really small shift key and it is a pain in the ass to hit. =)