BLOG: Too many visiting fans at Cardinals games?

Posted at 12:45 PM, Sep 29, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-29 15:45:01-04

It's a fact of life for sports fans born and raised in the state of Arizona: The Phoenix area's warm weather and low-cost housing attracts people from cities all across the United States (and Canada) to the Valley. 

And when these folks move to Arizona, they bring their sports loyalties with them.

That fact is evident at nearly every professional sporting event in the Phoenix area, where you'll always see plenty of visiting jerseys in the stands.

With a perfect 3-0 record to open the 2015 season, the Arizona Cardinals are currently the toast of the Valley -- but even they aren't immune from legions of visiting fans infiltrating their home games.

In fact, during Sunday's win over the visiting San Francisco 49ers, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said the team had to use a silent count -- a method for snapping the football that's typically used on the road when it's difficult for the visiting team to hear the quarterback over noisy fans.

"I wish it wouldn't happen right now. I would hope that the visiting team wouldn't get that many tickets and that we would have to use a silent count at home," Arians said Monday.

Arians believes the noise generated by 49ers fans in Glendale caused problems for offensive tackle Bobby Massie, who returned to the field Sunday after a two-game suspension.

"Bobby played fair rusty. What cost him was the crowd noise. They couldn't hear early in the game because the crowd noise got us at home," Arians said.

"He got victimized by getting off to a slow start because of the crowd noise. We had to switch to a silent count because of it."

University of Phoenix Stadium has quickly become a tremendous home-field advantage for the Cardinals -- they're 15-3 in Glendale since 2013, the fifth-best record for any NFL team during that span.

But regardless of the success the Cards enjoy and the amount of noise generated by the home fans, the number of visiting fans in attendance isn't likely to drop anytime soon.

For Arians' sake, let's hope the Cards won't have to resort to another silent count during crucial home games against the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks later in the season.