Arrowhead Stadium hits target for fan experience

December 9, 2011 Review Print Print
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The Kansas City Chiefs warm up pre-game anthem “We Ready” blared through the speakers at Arrowhead Stadium during a cold November Sunday evening, but the Chiefs were anything but ready as the Pittsburgh Steelers defense took advantage of Chiefs’ back-up quarterback Tyler Palko’s four interceptions in a 13-9 Steelers victory.

Arrowhead Stadium is also considered the loudest place to play football in the NFL as the Chiefs proudly boast on their video screens before the game, and it was when Tyler Palko was in the game at quarterback; however, the crowd noise wasn’t all positive.

With injuries to Chiefs starting QB Matt Cassel, running back Jamaal Charles, and safety Eric Berry, the Chiefs need consistency from Palko.

Palko fumbled the ball once due to a mistimed snap and threw for three interceptions during the game.

Palko could have easily thrown another 10 interceptions during the course of the game.

Many of the Chiefs fans in attendance showered Palko with a chorus of boos and started a loud chant for third-string quarterback Ricky Stanzi, the Chiefs fifth round pick from the Chiefs 2011 NFL draft.

Poor quarterback play wasn’t limited to just the Chiefs, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger struggled against the Chiefs defense.

Roethlisberger finished 21-31 for 193 yards with a single touchdown and one interception. Roethlisberger’s touchdown was the only one thrown during the game.

After the game, Roethlisberger told the media he blamed his struggles against the Chiefs on a broken thumb caused in a previous game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Roethlisberger wasn’t the only Steeler banged up from injuries during the game.

Steelers’ safety Troy Polamalu left the game early in the first quarter due to injury after he banged his head against the knee of Chiefs offense tackle Steve Maneri.

Even with Polamalu out of the game, the Steelers had no problem containing the Chiefs offense.

The stadium where the Chiefs play, Arrowhead Stadium, recently has undergone renovations to the cost $375 million to upgrade the facilities to compete with more modern NFL stadiums such as the new Giants Stadium and the new Texas Stadium where the Dallas Cowboys play.

With an added emphasis on video screens, club suites, restaurants and seating, Arrowhead stadium should be considered again among the premier stadiums in the NFL.

Overall the experience at Arrowhead was excellent. Parking and exiting the stadium were a lot easier than I was anticipating without any lines at all. There were plenty of food options to choose from such as Kansas City barbecue to sushi to your favorite adult beverage. Everything was reasonably priced compared to most sporting events where it will cost you an arm or a leg.

Even though I’m a Steelers fan, Chiefs fans are a rabid diehard fan base that live and die by their team.

The majority I encountered were friendly and upbeat about their team despite the struggles of the Chiefs’ season.

The final play of the game was decided on an interception by Steelers cornerback Keenan Lewis originally intended for wide receiver Dwayne Bowe with 46 seconds left in the fourth quarter.

Coupled with an awesome fan experience while attending the game, anytime you can witness a defensive football battle where the game is decided on the final play, it makes for an exciting time.

Rating: A-

­To contact Joey Stipek, email onlineeditor@occc.edu.

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