To My Fellow Atlanta Fans

It took me an entire day to process Sunday night's game. I honestly think I was heartsick. I preemptively took Monday off, which was a very solid decision because I wouldn't have been any good at work. Side note: why is the Monday after the Super Bowl not a holiday? Or why not have the Super Bowl on a Saturday? 
I started Sunday full of hope and nerves. This team has been different this year, no one thought they could do it, and they were out to make a statement. Then Matt Ryan won the MVP and it all started to feel real. This could really be our year. Our chance to escape, if just for a few moments, the "most miserable sports city in America" title being the only one we manage to win.

This was going to be the year we weren't one and done if we actually made the playoffs. The year we could maybe forget about the infield fly in deep left field. just kidding, we'll never get over that one. It was our year to prove people wrong about our level of fandom and support for our teams. It was about so much more than the Lombardi trophy to us. 

I think that's what really makes it hurt all the way down to my toes. The first half of that game held so much promise, then we were going to get the ball back after halftime. It was really happening. All we had to do was maintain a 19 point lead. That's it. As a lifelong Atlanta and UGA fan, blowing the second half the way we did was nothing new. I wish it was something surprising and out of character. Maybe that would have dulled the pain. 

I'm sure we will be back, maybe sooner rather than later, but it doesn't make this loss sting any less. I definitely don't want to hear it from people who come from winning cities. People expect us to blow it, they talk down at us as a fan base. We're hard to get pumped to play against. No one ever thinks that we're good enough to make it to the big game. We just wanted to prove the world wrong.

So we close out the 2016 NFL season with our mantra of there's always next year. I think that maybe those were my first words. There's always next year. Maybe that's the year we get it together and hold on to that lead. But pitchers & catchers report in 6 days, so maybe this will be the year for the Braves instead. 

Atlanta, we love you. We always will. 

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