DENVER (CBS4) – Denver Broncos fans were encouraged to budget a little extra time to get into the gates at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on Sunday because of a more thorough pat-down procedure recommended by the NFL.
The pat-downs now include the lower parts of the legs. The increased security didn’t stop a man from sneaking a stun gun into a Jets game in New Jersey last Sunday.
On Sunday many fans got to the stadium early as part of a tailgating tradition people have been following for years. The early arrivers also had no wait times getting into the stadium. Longer lines were expected as new pat-down procedures were executed on everyone heading in.
The new pat-downs include from the ankles to the knees — a search for banned items as well as any dangerous weapons that would transform cheering fans to horrified fans in an instant. That is why many fans support any enhanced security.
“I’ve been to many, many sports activity games and all I want to say is I think they’re doing the right thing,” Broncos fan MaryAnn Ryan Keller said. “If people are bringing in things they’re not supposed to bring in I don’t think anybody’s going to object to a little bit of extra security.”
There are also fans who don’t agree because they don’t want pat-downs at a sporting event.
“I think it’s a little intrusive when we’re trying to get into a sports event,” fan Mike Riley said. “It’s important, but I don’t really like it.”
The Broncos would only say to allow extra time before future games as pat-downs would likely increase wait times.
Previously security guards only patted fans down from the waist up to look for banned items.
More than 16 million fans are expected to attend NFL games this season nationwide.