Long-time Jets fans, even the ones who tried to make believe it was gone, knew deep down in their green hearts, the curse still lingered in the shadows. Laughing hard, watching Jet fans and the media create a story of revival, of hope, and the ultimate joy of owning a Jets Super Bowl Championship T-Shirt a reality defined by a story that the curse would not allow to come true. The curse stood silent for the past six months fuming that Jet fans did not respect its power. It stayed quiet until just before game time when Jet fans in the parking lot were alerted on their cell phones to stay in their cars until an evil storm passed over. All the celebrating, the pork sausage, the filet mignons, all the wonderful food and cooking among the legions of long-time award-winning tailgating Jets fans had to be put on hold because evil was on its way to Metlife Stadium.
As fans received that message, the old school broked-hearted beaten-down ones prayed that it wasn’t an omen. No, this year was going to be different. This year it was not going to be the same old Jets. Aaron Rodgers laughed at that term just like Rex Ryan did twelve years ago. If you have been a Jets season ticket holder like I have been, there is a look that Jets fans usually give each other sometime in the first or second game that says it all. That look appeared twice last night, and for the first time in the miserable life of a Jets fan, it happened before even stepping into the stadium, before the very first game of the season.
A little while after the alert appeared, the sky over Metlife Stadium turned apocalyptic. There it was in the darkness of doom and gloom right over the green goblin lights of MetLife Stadium, the curse laughing down at all the hopeful Jet fans. The rookies just saw it as a storm. The die-hards saw it as something else, as they all gave each other that look.
The storm passed over, and the stadium filled with fans trying to make believe what they just witnessed was nothing but a genuine storm devoid of supernatural powers. It was just clouds and electricity. Simple Earth Science. Jet fans began their rituals of buying overpriced food and even more overpriced drinks despite already consuming enough beer and food to last a week in the parking lot. That’s just what you do at Jets Games, and it’s wonderful.
The electricity before the game began was the loudest it had ever been in the history of MetLife Stadium. My son said it sounded like the game had already started. The lights went dark and out came Aaron Rodgers on 9/11 running with the beautiful and glorious American Flag. Everyone felt proud on so many levels, everyone felt hope, resolve, and the power that transcends among everyone. It wasn’t just about the NY Jets at that moment. It was about about so much more. Then the lights came back on.
Despite many years of losing, Jet fans bring it to every game no matter what. The start of a New York Jets game is one of the most exciting moments in sports for a fan in the seats. J.E.T.S. Jets Jets Jets. That chant is extremely powerful. Led by Fireman Ed and JetsMan, it brings fans together in a single voice that celebrates Jets Fandom on a level that can’t be matched in any other stadium in the NFL. I don’t care what they say about Steeler fans or Cowboy fans, this is New York baby!
The storm had been long forgotten, the stadium was going nuts, the Bills received and did nothing. The moment that we had been waiting for had arrived. The saviour ran fast and hard out on the field and the stadium erupted as if it had just won the Super Bowl. It had never been louder in the history of Metlife Stadium.
As the crowd became louder than a Black Sabbath concert, simmering above the stadium filled with anger at the sight of joyous Jets fans, the curse had other plans. That deal Namath made with you know who is one of the most iron-clad deals ever made. And just like that…… on the fourth play of the game, the curse came sweeping down through the stadium the way the power of the Ark swept through everyone in Raiders of The Lost Ark and sucked the life out of every single Jets fan in the stadium and the millions watching on TV.
We all knew it as we watched Aaron Rodgers on the ground. No one wanted to accept it, but it is our destiny as Jets fans. There is no way around it. The Jets are a cursed team. I desperately want to believe that’s all nonsense. I am hoping that I can eat my words at the end of this season, or any season while I am still alive, I’m hoping that good will rise up against evil, and that there will be some sort of fairy tale ending. We got a little tease of it the way the game ended with Garett Wilson and the Hard Knocks star Xavier Gipson bringing the crowd back to life. Yet, in the end, I share the same sad understanding that all die-hard emotionally damaged Jet fans realize, Broadway Joe made a deal with the devil, and last night the devil had his or her (probably hers) biggest laugh of all……….
Jet’s Curse Storms Into Stadium Swallowing Aaron Rodgers article published on ClassicNewYorkHistory.com ©2023
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