â Daniel Gotera (@DTGoteraKHOU)
October 17, 2016
The Texans trailed the Colts by 14 points as their offense took the field with 7:04 to play in the fourth quarter on Sunday night. Going off what we’d seen in the prior three and a half quarters, there was nothing to indicate an epic comeback was in the offing.
Thousands of Texans fans at NRG Stadium shared the same feeling, fleeing the facility en masse. But sports can be weird, and the same Texans team that had flatlined all evening suddenly sprang to life with two touchdowns in their final possessions of regulation before winning the game in overtime on a Nick Novak field goal.
It was a dramatic and important win for the Texans that kept them atop the limp AFC South. And after the game, some prominent Houston players expressed frustration with the fans who didn’t stick around for the big finale.
“I just want to know for all the fans who left, I hope their brisket turned out OK,” said defensive tackle Vince Wilfork. “They had to go home and check it. … To see you have a shot in the game and to see half the stadium empty, it was surprising, to be honest with you. I never encountered that before, but I guess it is what it is.”
Former Hard Knocks All-Star Charles James took things a step further, saying he was “pissed” to see Reliant Stadium half empty by overtime.
“It kind of sucks to be one of those fans, because when we come back and we win the game it sucks on your part because it shows your true colors.”
James did add he had “love” for the fans who did stick around.
“Those are the true fans. Those are the people I love to see, we love to see, as a unit. The people who stayed out there. Those are the people whose hands I want to shake.”
I’ve shared my theory on this in the past: You shouldn’t leave a game early unless you have a damn good reason to do so. Family emergency, work commitment, natural disaster, things like that. Not to mention, the logic doesn’t check out. If half the stadium is filing out midway through the fourth quarter, you’re not getting any more of a jump on the traffic than the people who stick it out.
Just stay in your seat. Keep booing if you want, but stay in your seat. You may just be rewarded for your patience.