Vikings fans headed to Philly told to be very afraid of Eagles fans
Some travel agents in Minnesota are issuing an ominous warning to Vikings fans ready to descend upon Philadelphia for Sunday’s NFC Championship game: The “City of Brotherly Love” is just a nickname.
The city that notoriously pelted Santa with snowballs at an Eagles game in 1968 continues to live up to its reputation some 50 years later, at least from the perspective of ticket brokers and tourism officials roughly 1,100 miles away. Drew Baydala of Minneapolis’ Ticket King told CBS Philadelphia that he’s warning prospective ticket buyers to keep their emotions in check should the Vikings win at Lincoln Financial Field.
“If the Vikings win, yes, I would take off any sort of, like, colors,” Baydala said. “I know it sounds ridiculous, like we’re almost talking about gangs here, but it’s no joke down in Philly. It really isn’t.”
Another Minnesota-based travel company, Creative Charters, is also warning Vikings fans against getting too tipsy while in the stands.
“I would advise you not to be over-inebriated because they will be,” marketing director Steve Erban told CBS Philadelphia.
Look no further for proof of Lincoln Financial Field’s raucous reputation than Saturday’s divisional round playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons. Police said an intoxicated man who showed up to the game without a ticket was arrested for punching a police horse and a cop.
After getting booted from the stadium, police said, Taylor Hendricks, 22, of Whitehall, Pa., walked over to a mounted police officer and began punching the horse in the face, neck and shoulder. Hendricks then struck the unidentified cop, still on the horse, in the legs. He was then taken into custody by another officer. The cop and the police horse were not injured, Philadelphia police told The Post in a statement.
Philadelphia’s infamous fan base, particularly Eagles fans, has long been recognized nationally. A 2015 poll by Sports Illustrated found that the Eagles had the “Most Hated Fan Base” in the entire NFL.
The poll referenced Santa’s snowballs and an incident in 1999 when several of receiver Michael Irvin’s Cowboys teammates thought Eagles fans were booing Irvin as he lay on the field with a neck injury that ultimately cut short his Hall of Fame career.
“In truth, the fans were booing Deion Sanders, but the fact that they cheered as Irvin lay on the field motionless tells you all you need to know,” according to the 2015 poll. “Every fanbase is unfortunately defined by the minority who do stupid stuff like this, but it seems that Eagles fans are more defined than any other group.”
The Eagles, meanwhile, are ready to “bury the hatchet” and put any ill will connected to the 1968 snowball attack on Santa — portrayed by a man named Frank Olivo, who died in 2015 — behind them. The team released a tongue-in-cheek video of a man in a Santa costume talking to a snowball at a diner to put the past behind them ahead of the team’s matchup against the Oakland Raiders on Christmas Day.
“Dude, we’re cool,” Santa told the snowball. “I’ve moved on.”
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) December 25, 2017
The imposing reputation of Philadelphia and its fans, however, isn’t stopping Minnesotans from heading east. As of Thursday, Creative Charters had sold all of its packages except two first-class seats — without game tickets — for $1,100 each, a company representative told The Post.