A brawl among fans erupted at the NFL game between the visiting Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Redskins on Sunday.
Unfortunately, history has shown that on any given Sunday, as the saying goes in another context, fan-on-fan violence could break out. In this particular disturbing altercation, a man wearing a Cowboys jersey appears to attack two female Redskins fans.
What distinguishes this brawl from so many others is that it happened before the game and in the parking lot of FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland, rather than inside the venue when, like in many stadiums, fan rivalries can spiral out of control. The Redskins play their home games in Landover.
The Cowboys won the game 27-23 thanks to a late touchdown by running back Alfred Morris, a former Redskins player.
The apparent aggressor in the brawl, at least based on the limited footage embedded below, appears to be a man in a Cowboys No. 33 jersey who shoved a woman wearing a Redskins jersey to the ground. Uproxx describes what happened next.
“A group of fans tried to restrain him, which led to him throwing punches to get himself freed. Another woman in Washington apparel came to yell at the man, but he ended up trying to grab and punch the woman before others intervened. Eventually, the man was pulled away from the second woman, a group of fans ganged up on him, and a brawl appears to have broken out.”
“Things escalated for a few minutes before the fighting stopped. If only their respective teams showed this much intensity on the field,” the BigPlay website commented.
“This may be the craziest fight video from Sunday. We all know that Cowboys and Redskins have a rivalry, but this kind of thing should never happen. There is no doubt that the police will be looking into this one,” the Windy City Sportsblog added.
Separately, in the first week of the NFL regular season, Cowboys fans for reasons unknown brawled with each other at an AT&T Stadium concourse.
The typical scenario in these encounters is that trash-talking fans, usually drunk, wearing home team gear get into a brawl with those wearing apparel of the visitors as if they are actually members of the teams.
For many years, as alluded to above, an intense rivalry has existed between the NFC East Cowboys and Redskin, and this may have prompted the brawl by fans in the FedEx Field parking lot on Sunday, possibly in a typical tailgating environment where alcohol tends to flow.
Why grown men and women at football, basketball, hockey, or baseball games feel the need to wear team jerseys with the names of other grown men on the back is a matter that should be the subject of social science inquiry.
Behavior outside the venue is, of course, a separate matter, although team ownership can exercise some control over the parking areas. That being said, the NFL (and other sports leagues) generates huge profits through jersey sales. If such violence continues, as it seems to be across the country, taking into consideration the revenue garnered from beer sales inside the venues making it unlikely that the spigot will be turned off, here’s a prediction: Away team jerseys will eventually be banned from stadiums, arenas, and, perhaps, outside the stadiums on game day.
In an unrelated incident below, a Houston Astros fan for reasons unknown had to be forcefully removed by a posse of cops and security guards from a Texas Rangers game (NSFW for language).
In general, do you think that sports fans are taking their team fanaticism way too far?
[Featured Image by Mark Tenally/AP Images]