Die Hard: Can You Really Claim You Are a "Die Hard" Fan?

Ryan NotermanCorrespondent IJanuary 14, 2011

JACKSONVILLE, FL - DECEMBER 12:  A fan of the Oakland Raiders cheers during the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on December 12, 2010 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

How many "die hard" fans have you met in the past two weeks? My guess, too many to count.

With the NFL Playoffs in full swing, many "die hard" fans have busted out their dusted up gear that sat in the closet for over a year, or at least since their team made the playoffs last, to cheer on their team.

I have no problem with you cheering for your favorite team. There is absolutely nothing wrong with jumping on the bandwagon of the Seahawks, Ravens, Steelers, etc. Being a fan of these teams has made the NFL what it is today.

What I do have a problem with is when these bandwagon fans declare themselves as "die hard" fans.

Really? Yes really.

"Die hard" is described as someone not easily swayed from their belief.

That is the complete opposite of being a bandwagon fan. Being a bandwagon fan is easily being swayed of their belief depending on how well the team that they have chosen to cheer for is currently doing.

So what do I do as a "die hard" NFL (Redskins) fan? I start to question the loyalty. How many "die hard" fans know a team's first round draft pick of their first season in the league?

The answer should be all of them. I have given a pass before if the fan can name all the Super Bowls and scores of those games that their team has played in.

Of course for the fans of the Browns, Jaguars, Texans, and Lions, they better be able to name their first ever first round pick.

It is a sign of disrespect to the real die hard fans that have bled the team's colors for years. These fans have actually learned about the team's history and is not ashamed to display their team's jersey, even when they are 0-16.

Now it is not hard to become a die hard fan. All you have to do is learn some information about the team so you can have an intelligent conversation with another die hard fan.

If that is too much to ask, then please just sit back, cheer the team on and quit claiming you have "die hard" loyalty.

This goes for all sports, especially the NBA with the Miami Heat. I have met more "die hard" Heat fans in the last six months than the team had during their 2006 championship run.

So keep in mind, when cheering for your favorite team this postseason, please be mindful of other fans and the loyalty they have displayed for years before the bandwagon was full.