Minnesota Vikings Head Coach Says Packers Fans Not Welcome at U.S. Bank Stadium
The kickoff to the 2022 NFL season is just weeks away. The first game of the season, on Thursday, September 8, is a highly anticipated battle between 2021 Super Bowl Champion Los Angeles Rams and the Buffalo Bills, who many believe will win the title this season.
While that is certainly a marquee matchup, and perhaps a preview of the next Super Bowl, another highly anticipated showdown occurs on Sunday, September 11, when the Green Bay Packers travel to Minnesota to take on the Minnesota Vikings.
If you've been to a Vikings/Packers game in the past, you know that there is always a contingent of Green Bay fans that infiltrate U.S. Bank Stadium. Some are friends of Vikings fans who go together as a friendly rivalry. Others are there just to try to make as much noise as possible for their favorite team.
This can be a lot of fun, unless alcohol gets too heavily involved from fans of both teams. A Vikings/Packers game remains the only game I've ever attended where I witnessed punches thrown between fans that were obviously fueled by beer.
However, this year the Vikings are under a new regime and the new head coach has made it clear that he does not want to see any Packers fans inside U.S. Bank Stadium or the colors from any other NFL team besides the Minnesota Vikings.
He made his impassioned plea Monday night following a Vikings evening practice, which was attended by fans. After thanking the fans and stating how much he loves coaching the team, he ended with:
“At our stadium, we should never, ever see the other team’s colors in the stands,” said O’Connell. “I don’t want to see any green, I don’t want to see any yellow, at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sept. 11.”
Not surprisingly, the comment was quickly picked up by media in attendance that evening and shared across social media.
I see O'Connell's point in that you want to fire up the fanbase and get U.S. Bank Stadium as loud as possible at every home game. While you obviously can't prevent fans from other teams from attending, Minnesota fan's can make enough noise to drown them out and make them a nonfactor.
Of course, making a lot of noise at U.S. Bank Stadium ultimately boils down to how good the product is on the field. We will get our first regular season look at that product on Sunday, September 11. Kickoff at U.S. Stadium is set for 3:25 p.m.