WASHINGTON (Fedex Field)
- WASHINGTON REDSKINS FOOTBALL
- GAME DAYS: Multiple (I'll have attended 119 Redskins pre-season and regular season home games at Fedex Field through the end of the 2012 season. I've missed just 13 regular season home games since 1999.
- CAPACITY: 91,704 when it was originally opened; now around 79,000 as Dan Snyder has had to remove thousands of seats so games aren't blacked out. It's an open secret in Washington that the waiting list for season tickets, rumored to be in the tens of thousands, no longer exists.
- THE TRIP: I was a Redskins fan long before I moved to DC. When you grow up in Houston, you learn to love the Cowboys not so much. It used to be that Dallas and Washington played each other during Thanksgiving, and I started rooting for Kilmer instead of Staubach. When I moved to Washington, I started going to games and eventually found season tickets, which I've had since 1999.
- IMPRESSIONS: Solid base of loyal and knowledgeable fans. But although Fedex Field is marginally "nicer" than its predecessor, RFK Stadium, it is entirely devoid of character. Poor quality, expensive concessions. Too much loud advertising all game long - like listening to a radio station at full volume for 3 hours, occasionally interrupted by some football.
- WE LOVE: The two sections in the stadium where I've had season tickets. I've gotten to know a few people there, and they pretty much always show up. Despite the crappy stadium, losing teams and constant QB and coaching changes the franchise has endured since Dan Snyder took over in 1999, every year I remain optimistic and blindly plunk down my hard-earned dollars for tickets, $35 parking (but the hour-long wait in stadium traffic is FREE) and $9 beer. Despite my bitching, IT'S WELL WORTH IT. Also, gotta love the Redskins band, the only NFL marching band in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Let tailgating and victory commence! Hail to the Redskins!
- WE DO NOT LOVE: Owner Dan Snyder, the NFL's worst owner. See also: The Book of Daniel.
- But I will admit a couple of things about Dan Snyder. First, he has recenly backed off as a meddling owner and for the most part has allowed his GM and coaches to make important team decisions. Second, he has been steadfast in his refusal to change the team name due to pressure from the media and a very small group of unhappy folks. Read his eloquent defense of the team name here.
- MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT: December 2, 2007, the week after Redskins star safety Sean Taylor died at the age of 24. The Redskins gave an emotional tribute to him before the game that day, including a moment of silence during which 90,000 tearful fans waving white towels imprinted with "21" created a hushed, solemn and beautiful peace at Fedex Field.