Jim Schwartz left more than a few Detroit Lions fans upset, when he jokingly asked his Buffalo Bills players to carry him off the field if his team defeated the Lions earlier this year. His players followed through, and now the act could come back to haunt him.
Schwartz, the former Lions head coach who was fired last year and picked up by Buffalo as their defensive coordinator, had apparently told his players as a joke that he deserved to get carried off Ford Field if the Bills beat the Lions in the Week 5 matchup. The Bills did just that, erasing a 14-point deficit to win the game. And true to their word, the players did carry Schwartz off the field.
But now a once-in-a-century blizzard has forced the Bills to give up a home game to the New York Jets and move the game to Detroit, where many are still upset at Jim Schwartz. Detroit radio station 101.5 FM is calling on listeners to make the game a “Green Monday” by wearing Jets gear and rooting against Schwartz and the Bills, essentially stealing their home-field advantage.
If fans follow through, they have a chance to make quite the impact. Tickets for the game, which were given out for free, sold out in just a few hours. While the Bills expect a number of fans to make the roughly six-hour drive from Western New York to Michigan to attend the game, it’s likely that most of the fans will come from the greater Detroit area.
The game could have important playoff implications for the Bills. At 5-5, they need to win on Monday night to remain in the hunt, and will likely need to win out the rest of the year to ensure a spot in the playoffs. With Jim Schwartz turning what could have been a neutral field into a hostile atmosphere, that may have just gotten a lot more difficult.