If there is one thing we know to be a fact, it's that sports would be meaningless without fans.
Sure, games would still be fun to play, but sports as we know it wouldn't exist. This website certainly wouldn't. However, not all fans or fanbases are created equal. Certain fanbases pride themselves on their ability to affect the course of a game, especially in college football and the NFL.
Crowd noise frequently contributes to false starts, unnecessary timeouts and getting into the head of opposing quarterbacks. Some fanbases believe some teams take this a step further than others, though. Texas A&M has the 12th Man, which it has trademarked; the Seattle Seahawks have "The 12s," which they license the trademark of from A&M; and other teams such as the Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts have added their fans to their Rings of Honor. And then there's Arrowhead Stadium.
Chiefs Kingdom Rules the Decibel War
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If crowd noise is a kingdom, then the Kansas City Chiefs are king. Arrowhead Stadium is among the loudest stadiums in the world. During a 2014 game against the New England Patriots, the Chiefs fans who packed Arrowhead Stadium reached a roar of 142.2 decibels with eight seconds to go in the first quarter, which still stands as the loudest recorded crowd roar in the Guinness World Records. Seriously, put any team at Arrowhead -- be it the Packers, Bengals, Giants, Cowboys, Titans, Rams, Texans, Steelers or Vikings -- and even the toughest teams in the league would need some noise-canceling headphones on the plane ride out of Missouri. But Chiefs fans have been annoying their AFC West rivals and the rest of the NFL teams that venture into Arrowhead for much longer than that.
Just ask Broncos legend, John Elway.
John Elway Battles the Arrowhead Crowd
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It was in 1990 when Arrowhead Stadium became the raucous Arrowhead we know today, in the middle of a December matchup between the Chiefs and the Denver Broncos. The year prior, the NFL instituted a new rule that tried to limit crowd noise, in small part due to the growing number of indoor stadiums.
Trailing in the game and backed up on his own 1-yard line, Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway asked referee Gordon McCarter to intervene against the deafening roar of the Arrowhead crowd.
McCarter acknowledged Elway, faced the Arrowhead crowd and said over his microphone, "Again, I have asked the defense to help lower the crowd noise. Any further crowd noise problem will result in a charged timeout against Kansas City. Thank you for your cooperation."
What resulted was an even louder roar from the Chiefs' fans, one that head coach Marty Schottenheimer appeared to approve of despite being threatened with the loss of a timeout. Elway would ask again for help but was told to get on with it.
The Chiefs would go on to beat the Broncos 31-20. More importantly, though, Arrowhead Stadium became just as important to the Chiefs' success as Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid are to the team today. In a division where all four teams -- Broncos, Raiders, Chargers and Chiefs -- have playoff and Super Bowl aspirations, having the Arrowhead crowd may just be the edge the Chiefs need to go further than their AFC West rivals.
But one thing is for certain: If you happen to be taking in a game at Arrowhead, please please please don't forget your earplugs.
MORE: The 10 Loudest NFL Stadiums Aren't Safe For Ear Drums
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