JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Patriots fans are people too, and some of them live right here in Northeast Florida.
The local fan club headquarters for Sunday's game will be at Wild Wing Cafe on the city’s Southside and the folks who manage it are running a zone defense of sorts.
Patriots fans will have a big room and Jags fans will be on the other side to watch the big game.
The representatives of the Patriots Fan Club of Jacksonville were already posted at Wild Wing Café on Saturday to do a little pregame warmup of their own.
The group is led by a solid lineup of fan club founding members:
- Michael Rivera, of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Favorite player: “The leader, Tom Brady."
- David McGraw, of Framingham, Massachusetts. Favorite player: “Tom Brady."
- Pete Danish, of Chickapee, Massachusetts. Favorite Player: “Gronk"
- "Mary Chihoski, of Las Vegas. Favorite player: “Tom Brady."
Some of the fans were shouting their allegiance from the rooftops, while others, not so much.
News4Jax asked Patriots fan club member David McGraw if he was showing his colors in his neighborhood.
“Absolutely not," McGraw said laughingly.
Danish said it's not been easy being a Pats fan in Jaguars’ territory.
"This week's been a little intense at work,” Danish said.
Rivera said he’s encountered rowdy Jags fans all over town.
"At a red light, stop sign, the gym, Jacksonville Jaguar fans, they're definitely hecklers and they're coming out and attacking us," Rivera said
These guys, however, know how to dish out their own trash talk.
"I've already seen five Super Bowl rings, so I'm pretty content,” McGraw said.
And, apparently, for Pats fans, blood is NOT thicker than water.
"My daughter, Lucian's mom, was a cheerleader for five years with the Roar,” Danish said.
But perhaps one of the youngest Pats fans put it best when her classmates were telling her the Jags were a lock.
"I'm like, ‘No, I think the Patriots are gonna win and the Jags are gonna lose,'” Chihoski said.
And that was really what the whole Patriots fan club had to say today: They love their city. So no matter who wins, they win. So Sunday will be a pretty great day for them, no matter what the outcome.