So this is a new one. For anyone who follows baseball and the Oakland Athletics saga involving their pending relocation to Las Vegas, chances are, you’re familiar with what a reverse boycott is.
Background: For years, the Athletics have been notorious for being able to develop all-star level talent, only for cheap ownership trade their stars in the middle of their primes instead of spending money to retain and build around them. Matt Olson, Tim Hudson, Sean Murphy (Braves fans should be very familiar with those guys), Chris bassit, Sean Manea, Matt Chapman, Josh Donaldson, Yoenis Cespedes, Liam Hendricks, Jason Giambi, Barry Zitto, and Nick Swisher are the notable names regarding homegrown talent in which the A’s have let go of in their primes. The team also plays baseball in a stadium which was renovated in the 90s to make it designed for football- remember that ugly Coliseium where the raiders used to play their home games? Yeah. That’s where the athletics play. The stadium is decaying, they have rats running around the concourse, the bullpens are on the field, which has been out of style in baseball parks for almost 30 years, and sewage leaks. The cherry on top: for almost 20 years, the athletics have been heavily involved in relocation rumors. San Jose and now Vegas, which is likely to be approved my MLB owners soon.
All of the following have resulted in poor attendence numbers for the A’s even during playoff years, including record low attendance numbers this past year not seen in the Major League Baseball or any major North American sports league in decades. Averaging around 5000 people in the stands. Many in the media have used the poor attendence numbers to blame the relocation largely on a lack of fan support. So in response, a group of fans organized what is known as a "reverse boycott." For context, when the stadium is usually empty during games because of the given circumstances, A’s fans decided to pack the Coliseum during a random game in June against the Tampa Bay Rays. The purpose of the boycott was to show Major League Baseball and the media that if the fans were willing to pack the stadium on a random weeknight in June for a team that was having one of the worst seasons in MLB history and was on its way out of town, then they weren’t the problem and that the real issue was rightfully the incompetent owner.
On June 13th, the packed the stadium with almost 30 thousand fans. Keep in mind, John fisher, the owner, tarped the upper level years ago, reducing a large bulk of seats in the stadium to reduce attendence and give himself another excuse to skip town. That night had the atmosphere of a postseason game. Chants of "sell the team" and others were of great notice.
Where I’m going with this
The narrative surrounding Atlanta fans, particularly the falcons, is that they are unloyal and have had a role in the falcons being historically the worst franchise in pro sports. Opposing team fans constantly showing up to games in large numbers during losing seasons and the stadium being half empty. Who could blame falcons fans for not supporting a terrible team with a horrible owner? Everyone who follows this team and lives in this city knows what a falcons game is like when it is done right. During winning seasons, fans flock to home games, as they should, proving that the team, and not the fans, are the problem. We are in a bad predicament with our team, like Oakland is with the the athletics. Losing team, terrible ownership, and the media and others taking shots at the fans. To stick it to the media and to stick it to Arthur blank for running this franchise into the ground, I am calling for a reverse boycott on the season home finale against the colts. Both teams will be well out if playoff contention by then. That would be a great game to show that the fans aren’t the problem and the problem is blank. I am calling for falcons fans to pack Mercedes Benz stadium on that game against Indy and engage in a reverse boycott. Similar to the chants in the links above, we need to chant things such as
"sell the team"
"f—k Arthur blank"
"ATL H*" which is a popular chant throughout the city
Such an event is wishful thinking, but it is definitely possible. I’m starting to see a bit of a change in this fanbase for the better. The offense has been booed off the field multiple times this year, how this fanbase behaves on Twitter. If we somehow pull this off and it works, then maybe it could force something. What if it got the attention of the national media? Even the NFL? It could get folks talking and even end up saving this franchise.