Daily Madden: Candlestick Violence Symptomatic Of NFL’s Declining Fan Experience

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Police and team officials are planning to increase security at Candlestick Park after violence in the stadium and parking lot marred Saturday night’s 49ers-Raiders game.

John Madden told the KCBS morning crew he thinks it’s symptomatic of a bigger problem in that the fan stadium experience doesn’t appear to be a priority in the NFL.

“This isn’t something that just showed up Saturday night in San Francisco,” Madden said. “Over the years, I don’t think that the clubs, the NFL have really taken care of the fans…I hear all this rhetoric when they have a new collective bargaining agreement. Players will say they’re doing this for the fans, owners will say they’re doing this for the fans. I always say ‘doing what? What did you do? You did nothing for the fans, except take away.’ You look at ticket prices, you look at season PSLs, you look at concessions, you look at parking, everything goes up, up, up.”

Madden said fan security and comfort should be a priority.

That’s what they have to watch out for, that the parking lots in our stadiums don’t become hangouts for hooligans, and that our stadiums don’t.”

As for the game itself, John said he was impressed by the 49ers offensive line and the running game.

“The best friend of a quarterback is a good running game,” John said. “That’s the direction that they (the 49ers) could go in.”

The Raiders, John said, need to fix their game in the trenches.

“The Raiders have to improve in their line play, both offense and defense,” said the former head coach.  (7:55)

(Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.)

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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