No Time for Bandwagon Fans

Lombardi Gras

There are plenty of vacant seats on the Ravens bandwagon.

Spoiled by success, frustrated by unrealistic expectations, fans are dropping off in droves even before the next stop and despite just passing the midway point of the 2013 season.

Intoxicated by a World Championship fans want the buzz to last. They want to hear the Ravens being celebrated throughout the national media. They want that full year of having that “defending champ” persuasion.

But the buzz is gone and only a nasty hangover remains – one that is seemingly getting worse.

It wasn’t supposed to go down this way. Repeating in the NFL is a ridiculously difficult task, but did the Ravens title defense so far have to be so agonizing? The Ravens barely got to wear their shiny bling in its full luster before they began to deal with things like:

 

  • First defending Super Bowl champ to be 3-5 after 8 decisions
  • Worst rushing average since the merger of the NFL/AFL

It’s akin to Miss America having her crown stripped away after uncompromising photos surfaced on the web.

Ever since the NFL’s opening night escaped to the Rocky Mountain High things just haven’t gone the way we all hoped. They told us our parade was to feature magnificent skies of blue but instead we’ve weathered only rain without an umbrella.

Fans are ticked.

They feel ripped off.

And we’ll all be damned if someone doesn’t take the blame.

Fire Harbaugh! Cam Cameron Part II! Ozzie is losing it!

Bisciotti sold out! Cut Ngata! Rice is done!

And whose idea was it to feature this zone-blocking scheme?

This season has been like the Twilight Zone!

AHHHHHHH!

A deep breath and a little perspective, people.

The Ravens didn’t expect things to go down the way they have. Their intentions were all good and they wanted to stave off the wrath of Father Time so that our Super Bowl heroes were not exposed as aging has-beens – long-in-the-tooth champions.

Unfortunately they’ve made a few mistakes that leave them staring at a disappointing record and up at this week’s opponent, the division leading Cincinnati Bengals.

While hardly perfect the Ravens organization is strong, among the game’s best. They will adjust their sails and rediscover their winning ways.

It may not be this year and even if it’s not, let’s remember that not a single one of the other 32 teams has enjoyed the consistent success of the Ravens since John Harbaugh’s arrival.

 

  • 5 consecutive seasons in the playoffs
  • 3 Conference Championship appearances
  • 1 Super Bowl Title

There are franchises out there with great fan bases that would die to have such creds on their resume.

We can criticize the 2013 season and we should. Such critical thinking is a prerequisite for improvement.

But quitting on the team?

C’mon man!

As bad as it’s been this team, our team has lost 4 games by a total of 14 points. They aren’t that far away. And even if the string is broken and 2013 finds them at home in their recliners during the playoffs, they will be back. They are just too good organizationally not to.

Until then remember your loyalties, your civic pride. Who or what has lifted that pride more than the Ravens?

They are the single-most galvanizing force in the land.

They are akin to family.

And from where I come from, you never go against the family.

Unless of course you’re one of them – those bandwagoners!

This entry was posted in Blog View, Featured, Lombardi's Way by Tony Lombardi. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tony Lombardi

Tony Lombardi
Tony is 24x7 Networks, LLC's founder (the parent of EutawStreetReport.com and RussellStreetReport.com) His work has been featured on various sports websites and he is a regular guest on 105.7 The Fan. A diehard Fab Four fan, Tony is a frustrated musician who thinks beating on the steering wheel is akin...more

13 Raves on “No Time for Bandwagon Fans

  1. Kathy on said:

    I agree totally. I was sitting at home thinking about how bad this season has been so far; having said that I realize that we are winners and have had a great run for the past five years. Too many personnel and coaching changes. I won’t point a finger at anyone, that seems counter=productive at this point. I am really hoping for a win tomorrow – if that doesn’t happen then I look forward to some high draft picks and a great season next year. GO RAVENS!

  2. libbyizzy on said:

    I have no time for Bandwagon Fans either. You’re either a Fan or you’re not! I will stand by my team, no matter what! Isn’t that what being a Fan is all about? Well written article. Enjoyed the read.

  3. Phil frm Frostburg on said:

    Nobody is quitting on the team, but fans are frustrated because this year’s problems were totally preventable. Ozzie and DeCosta over-corrected in an attempt to avoid what happened in 2002, and lost the soul of the team in the process. Meanwhile, Harbs hires this outsider who makes changes that blow away years of careful personnel drafting to the strengths of a very different blocking scheme. The scouting department must be more frustrated at Castillo than any group of fans. I hope leadership has the courage and humility to correct these mistakes.

  4. JerryB on said:

    I “bleed” purple, Tony! It was unrealistic to expect a “repeat” after all the roster changes, but not unrealistic to expect them to be more competitive and fun to watch, particularly with the offensive performance in the postseason! ! Changing the offensive line schemes after a successful postseason run and all the roster moves was ill-timed and ill-advised! That doesn’t mean I’m giving up on them; it means I’m frustrated with those decisions!

  5. OriAl on said:

    I stayed with the Orioles through all 14 straight sub-.500 seasons (and the many losing seasons before 1996 and 1997.) I was with the Colts as Irsay dismantled them. I’m with the Ravens when they win, and when they lose. I will cuss at my teams, and bitch about them, but I won’t leave them.

  6. charlie on said:

    is the team and the nfl to blame for some of the frustration felt by our fan base? $9 beer, special nfl clear bags, new crummy parking plan (all but ruining tailgating on the stadium lots) and rude parking attendants. how about shoving thurs night games (soon to be 2 each thurs) down our throats, games in london for ALL of the teams (probably a novelty the 1st time-how’s seattle going to like it?), can anyone say 18 game schedule? how about the officiating, the ridiculous rule changes forcing defensive backs to hit low, the hypocrisy regarding “players safety” and the absolutely criminal “settlement” that the current players assoc and nfl came to-who cares about player’s health-this ain’t your father’s nfl-it’s just a bunch of greedy businessmen tearing the game apart.

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