Jesse
Author

Win a Superbowl, Then Trade Away All The Reasons You Win

Feb 20, 2014 3:52 PM EST

From 8 - 14 yrs old I was a hardcore bucs fan. More hardcore than I am today. In fact, I can't name more than 5 or 6 players on their current roster today. But ask me anything about the bucs back in 2000-2003 and I would've recited stats and facts like it was my religion. It was.

When the bucs made it to the superbowl I was in my fan prime. 02' was a beautiful year. I lived for the rare moments when Sapp lined up at TE  for a quick screen and every linebacker and corner would bounce off him. He didn't steamroll, he just repelled them. 

Mike Alstott was a monster. Barber and Lynch were unstoppable. Keyshawn was still going strong. I actually didn't like Brad but he was a solid QB. 

Brooks, Rice, and Sapp made O-Lines shutter and QBs cringe. 

Automatica was clutch.

This was the perfect team. The best offensive defense, and the best defensive offense. 

And then, after humiliating the Raiders (Gruden ftw lol), all the reasons that made them a winning team, were traded/left. I was young and didn't understand the business of it. I didn't put myself in the players' shoes or think about prospects. I just knew this was my favorite team. I knew everything about the players, had multiple jerseys, and sung them like gospel. I even had exhibit displays customized for a fundraiser where I auctioned off sports gear at my school. Then, in one swift season, everyone was gone. I hated them, which made me hate football. Again, I was young, and the hate passed soon. But I wasn't passionate anymore.

I stayed in the loop by getting into Fantasy. But this was more routine and gamified then actually being passionate about a team and following them religiously. Then I started working, got older, worked more, graduated, etc...

Work started to pile up, such as content coordination for Maxwell Systems, freelance blogging, and community management. When Sundays rolled around I would rather catch up on Breaking Bad or GOT, then watch a game. I didn't lose interest completely in football, I just had a different mindset. I was interested in the business side of it.

I learned about trading policies, agreements, rules,  secret deals, and even PR scare tactics thanks to Chris Kluwe's many appearances online. I still keep tabs on the bucs, I just lost the fan spark. That's something I really admire about die-hard fans. They stick through the cyclical nature of players and winning and losing, no matter what. The crazed, painted, and sometimes bloodied fans screaming from their bleachers deserve that respect.