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Volume 25 No. 214
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Bears Using Air-Raid Siren To Pump Up Fans At Soldier Field

Teams can play artificial noise until the play clock hits 20 seconds or the offense gets to the line of scrimmage

The Bears began using an air-raid siren to energize the crowd at Soldier Field "before defensive plays in last week’s victory over the Rams," and the siren made was also used in yesterday’s "high-stakes game against the Packers," according to Morgan Greene of the CHICAGO TRIBUNE. While some Bears fans "delighted in the siren and credited the sonic addition with leading the team to two important wins," for other fans it was an "insult to those who know how to show up, support their team and use their voices." In the first half yesterday, when the siren "blared at the packed stadium, thousands of fans screamed, whirling their towels in the air" with the PA announcer saying “I can’t hear you.” When the siren "played in the second half, the Decibel X app clocked its combination with the crowd’s voices at decibels in the upper 90s to low 100s, or close to the sound of the subway." The "majority of fans" at yesterday's game "seemed happy to have a wall of sound backing their screams." After last week’s siren, Bears Senior VP/Marketing & Communications Scott Hagel said that fan response was "fantastic." Hagel: “The goal is to get our crowd energized from the get-go so that when we cut it off, they’re at a high crescendo.” Bears coach Matt Nagy said that siren was "'great' and he was 'ready for the fans to be just absolutely crazy again.'" Greene notes teams are "allowed to play artificial noise until the play clock reaches 20 seconds or the offense reaches the line of scrimmage" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 12/17).

TWITTER REAX: NBC Sports Chicago's Bears Talk feed tweeted, "Credit the Air Siren for that 3rd down sack. credit the Air Siren for the Bears' good starting field position. credit the Air Siren for it all." Chicago-based journalist Claire Zulkey: "I worry that after too many #Bears games I'm going to hear an air raid siren for real and just feel amped up." The Athletic's Corey Sznajder: "The Bears playing a tornado siren while they’re on defense is very disorienting to our dog." WFLD-Fox' Shae Peppler: "Fans are loud. Sirens are going off. Towels are being waived. ... It gets louder with every game." WBBM-CBS' Matt Zahn: "Surprised they gave the fans towels and not vuvuzelas."