PHOTOS: NFL Crowds Pack into Stadiums as Fans Across the Country Return for Week 1

by John Jamison

What a sight. We saw it last week with the return of college football. Stadiums are once again being filled to the brim. And the atmosphere players and fans alike missed so much is back with a vengeance. Across the country, NFL Sunday football kicked off to the roar of crowds numbering in the tens of thousands.

There’s nothing quite like having the comfort of football to look forward to over the weekend. Now, NFL fans don’t have to worry about the artificial crowd noise being pumped into empty stadiums over the speakers. Today, they get to experience the real deal. It’s amazing what that atmosphere can do for a game, even when watching from home. The images of stadiums from around the league are something to behold. For many in attendance, it’s the most people they’ve seen in one place in over a year and a half.

Take a look at some of these games and try not to get too jealous. If it helps, think about how much money you’re saving on beer by following the action from home.

The Buffalo Bills may have lost a 23-16 heartbreaker to the Pittsburgh Steelers. But that didn’t stop the entirety of Highmark Stadium and the Bills Mafia from losing their minds when they got their first look at star quarterback Josh Allen before the game.

And how about the Cincinnati Bengals? They held on to take a much-needed season-opening overtime win from the Minnesota Vikings, 27-24. The NFL stadium holds nearly 70,000 spectators, and they were out there in full force on Sunday.

A Tennessee Titans reporter took to Twitter and shared a photo of a packed Nissan Stadium in Nashville. The Titans took a tough 38-13 loss from the Arizona Cardinals, but the crowd didn’t disappoint.

NFL Pays Tribute With Touching 9/11 Commemoration

The NFL aired a heartfelt tribute ahead of Sunday’s games. None other than former FDNY firefighter Steve Buscemi narrated the video. In it, Buscemi emphasized the “9/12” message. It’s the same idea Medal of Honor recipient Dakota Meyer touched on recently. One of unity.

“Twenty years ago, this country was tested in a way we never had been before. Many believed we would never recover. We know very well that not to be the case. America faced her worst fears and heartbreak in 2001, on 9/11. This is the story of 9/12,” Buscemi said in the video. “The day after, we picked each other up. We did it by having faith and belief in one another, and in something bigger than ourselves. We did it together, and we did it by remembering who we are. But more importantly, who we as Americans aspire to be.”

This is coming from a man who himself offered assistance at Ground Zero in the days following the 9/11 attacks.