SBD/August 6, 2012/Franchises

Fans Showing NFL Preseason Support With Big Attendance At Practices

Broncos had to open the upper level for fans to watch Manning's debut
A crowd of 41,304 on Saturday at the Broncos' scrimmage at Sports Authority Field at Mile High "spilled out of the stadium's lower bowl, forcing the Broncos to open up the stadium's upper deck," according to Jeff Legwold of the DENVER POST. The fans, watching QB Peyton Manning make his Broncos debut, was the “largest to see the team practice in any venue in the franchise's history.” The attendance “crushed the single-practice record of 20,782 set two years ago” (DENVER POST, 8/5). Meanwhile, in DC, Mike Jones noted the Redskins on Saturday drew “an estimated 24,650 fans” to watch QB Robert Griffin III’s debut. Redskins Owner Dan Snyder said of the buzz that Griffin has generated, “I think it’s obviously exciting for everybody. It’s a big deal and we’re just thrilled with him as a person, what he stands for, as a Redskin, and it’s exciting for all of Redskins Nation” (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 8/4). In Cincinnati, Joe Reedy noted the Bengals on Saturday “drew slightly over 6,000 fans to Paul Brown Stadium” (CINCINNATI.com, 8/4). In Charlotte, Jonathan Jones noted the Panthers on Saturday drew 22,070 to the team's public practice at Bank of American Stadium, the "largest crowd at Panthers' Fan Fest since 1996" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 8/5). The Buccaneers said that “about 30,000” fans attended a scrimmage and autograph session Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 8/5). In West Palm Beach, Brian Biggane noted the Dolphins drew 8,721 on Saturday for a scrimmage at Sun Life Stadium (PALM BEACH POST, 8/5).
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