After the 32-30 loss the Arizona Cardinals suffered at the hands of the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, we shared some of reserve safety Hamza Abdullah's Twitter timeline about how he expressed his disappointment in the Arizona Cardinals fans for their showing (actually the lack thereof) at the stadium. Now, you may know that Abdullah is a friend of the site and actually contributed a few posts before last season.
Thanks to Seth Pollack, who does have media access for the SB Nation Arizona site, we were able to talk to him about what he had on his timeline.
In the interview, he was quick to make sure he was not misunderstood. "I never said I was frustrated. I just said I was disappointed," he clarified.
In an era in which people frequently retract things they say, either claiming things were taken out of context or whatever, he owned up to his timeline saying, "I said what I meant and I meant what I said." He also, apparently, is a Dr. Seuss disciple.
We noted and he put out on his timeline that he was offering 100 tickets to the game against the Rams. This was not a way to try to save face, he explained. He would have done a giveaway for the Steelers game but never had the opportunity because of the sellout. It also is not unheard of from him. "I did the same thing last year and gave away 100 tickets," he said. "It's not a big deal."
He did bring up what he brought up Sunday night, citing the 17-14 score with the defense on the field and the Steelers on third down. "If you're a true fan, that's the time when you ask yourself 'what can I do to lift my team up?" he explained.
"A fan, they're not going to help me make a block on special teams or going to help me make a tackle. What we ask of the fans is come to the game, enjoy yourself and get loud."
That is what was lacking. With the crowd being a vocal Steelers group, the fan intensity didn't come.
Again, he isn't wrong. But he commented on how in the playoff game against the Packers (whose fans travel better than any other town) the Cardinals fans kept most of the Cheeseheads out.
That is a poor example because it was the playoffs and we know how much Phoenix sports fans love to support teams that do well.
It is more a reflection of a larger issue in Phoenix sports. No team gets the passion from fans in a struggling season unless that team is brand new.
The Cardinals have been around just over a couple of decades. With how transient the people are here, we are only recently forming a base of fans that have had the Cardinals here while growing up. Other teams have storied franchises with generations of fans.
How to fix it? For now, it takes winning, and then the people will come. After that, be respectable and that rabid lifelong fan type will appear in larger numbers.