I think we can all agree that the Ravens have the best fans in the NFL. In addition to having amazing fans, the Ravens also have a plethora of “Super Fans” that have popped up over the last 16 years. Many of them are easily recognizable, such as Captain Dee-Fense, Bird Man, and Fan Man and the Bus Boys. Not only do the Super Fans attend most, if not all, home games, they also participate in local charity events throughout the Baltimore and surrounding areas. Several are even in the NFL Fan Hall of Fame!
The latest in a long line of dedicated Super Fans goes by the moniker of Major Offense. The Major has been a Ravens fan since the day they moved into town, but his character has only existed for the past four years. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Major Offense to discuss with him his love of the Ravens, where the character concept came from, and what motivates him to be part of the Super Fan community.
What do you love most about the Ravens? The organization is the definition of class; which was personified by the late Art Modell. The Ravens have done a lot to embrace the fans and that generates the passion for this team. I appreciate the type of players that they look to pull together as a team. It makes it easier to root for people like that.
How did ‘Major Offense’ come to be? “Major Offense” was born in 2008; generated by two things. First, the Ravens drafted Joe Flacco and Ray Rice, so the focus on the offense was obvious. During that season, Captain Dee-Fense was talking about the fact that he was always asked “Where is Captain Offense?” My tailgate group pushed me to fill that void and at the Oakland Raiders’ game, he made his appearance. In 2011, I met Fan Man and he said that there should not be two Captains. He thought the Ravens needed a major offense, so he held a promotional ceremony before the Indy game in Lot O.
What aspects of the uniform have evolved over the last few years? The uniform has changed designs since the beginning; most of which is because there is a limited number of purple uniforms. I wanted to create a different design than Captain Dee-Fense to distinguish the characters. The one thing that I make sure is distinct is the idea of medals for each playoff appearance for the Ravens. Coach Harbaugh has helped to add a few of them under his command. There are also other ornaments; the 9/11 pin and the Pink Ribbon for October, for instance. The ribbons are a combination of my father’s from the U.S. Army and the Baltimore City Police, as well as mine from ROTC/National Guard. The whole military nature of the character is in honor of those who serve, in addition to the flip side of Captain Dee-Fense.
What has been the best part of being Major Offense thus far? The best part of being Major Offense is the interaction that I have with people that I would not otherwise meet. When you have a special character, people know that they can interact with you more because you put it out there. Also, I enjoy spending time with other characters. We all understand why we do what we do, even though we have different backgrounds.
Are there any specific events or charities you’d like to be a part of in the future? All of the Super Fans encourage the community to contribute to charities, and participating in events can help draw focus to the help that is needed. The Roosts and Nests also are for that purpose. For me, I have a special interest in The Arc of Carroll County, Change, Inc. and the Wounded Warrior Project. If I am asked to help and the schedule allows it, then I am willing to help. Not everybody has the finances to contribute, but time and effort are just as important.
You are a fan of Bmore Chix on facebook. What are your thoughts on a female focused Ravens fan site? Bmore Chix is another place to read about football and get input from fans. That is an avenue that gives a female perspective, but it is not really that different than any other in dealing with the substance of the sport. One of the good things about football is that female fans are just as passionate and aware of the game as men; and can yell just as loud and be just as active during a game. I read the blogs regularly and find that there are perspectives that are enlightening. I find it interesting to see what draws the attention of women, both on and off the field. Generally, men are pretty simple in what they see, so another view can add another dimension. The interest in Fantasy Football also adds more to the draw of the sport and the fact that women participate as much as they do shows how involved they truly can be. Bmore Chix can give men a chance to learn a lot if they take the time to read what is offered. And really, men and women are just as invested in the Ravens; and that adds a shared interest between them.
I think it’s safe to say that the Major fits in quite nicely with the rest of the Super Fans. You can find Major Offense on Facebook, or before every home game tailgating in Lot O. Stop by, say hi and get a picture with him!