Fans excited for Patriots season opener, banner ceremony

Goodell expected to be greeted with waving of clown-face towels

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (WWLP) – It’s the day Patriots fans have been waiting for since the Pats won the Super Bowl back in February; football is back in Foxborough. Thursday night, the New England Patriots open the NFL season at home against the Kansas City Chiefs.

The game does not start until 8:30, but fans have been outside Gillette Stadium since early Thursday afternoon. Everyone wanted to get there early for a special banner-raising ceremony to celebrate the Patriots’ fifth Super Bowl win. Some fans are equally as exited for that moment as they are for the game.

“It’s electric- which is Gronk’s favorite word, as we found out recently. The fireworks; there’s nothing like it!” Patriots fan Don Sigillo said.

The Patriots went into the preseason ranked as the number one team in the NFL. There have, however, been some changes to the offense during the preseason, including a season-ending injury for wide receiver Julian Edelman.

The Pats did just make a trade with the Indianapolis Colts, picking up receiver Philip Dorestt for third-string quarterback Jacoby Brissett. That is a trade that fans are pretty excited about.

“I picked him up on fantasy, so give him three to four weeks and he’s going to be epic. Once he figures out the playbook and Brady starts to love him,” Patriots fan Greg Lozier said.

Something that Patriots fans aren’t too excited about is seeing NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell Thursday night. He will be at Gillette for the banner unveiling ceremony, and is not expecting a warm welcome.

Fans were seen in the parking lot handing out clown-face towels that they plan to wave when they see Goodell.

NBC Sports will have live coverage from Gillette Stadium beginning at 7:30pm, which you can watch right here on 22News.

NBC Sports will have live coverage from Gillette Stadium beginning at 7:30pm ET and fans can catch all the action in spectacular high definition via desktop at or accessing the NBC Sports app on tablet or connected television devices.

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