With the upcoming NFL Wild Card playoff matchup scheduled for Sunday between the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers, restaurant and shop owners in Arlington's Entertainment District are preparing for a boost of business.
Fans have waited 27 years for a post-season rematch between the rival teams, and the anticipation is reflected in ticket prices. According to The Dallas Morning News, some ticket prices have nearly tripled.
In an interview with 105.3 The Fan, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he expected plenty of 49ers fans to try to pack the stadium on Sunday.
“When you have a stadium the size we have, which is easily the highest attended stadium in the NFL, when you have a stadium the size of that .... you’re going to have opposing jerseys in there. Opposing fans, or opposing colors, if you will,” Jones said. “Home playoff game, and it will be roaring."
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Jones said he'd like to push capacity Sunday, including the standing-room-only crowd, to close to 100,000 people.
About two miles from the stadium, Old School Pizza Tavern owner Jeremy Washburn said they will be ready to serve customers this weekend. The restaurant has been up and running for nearly 11 years.
“I’m anticipating to-go and deliveries. I would honestly like for them to come in because we have excellent drink specials,” Washburn said. “However we can take care of the customer, the best we can do to take care of the customer is exactly what we’re going to do.”
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Washburn said this weekend, they will have a full staff with all hands on deck. He orders ingredients twice a week with shipments arriving on Mondays and Thursdays.
“When I order tomorrow, I’ll double up on everything that I usually order so that way it’s in stock,” he said.
The stadium is not only expected to be filled with Cowboys fans but 49ers fans, as well. Fans were well attended in their previous two regular-season trips to AT&T Stadium in 2014 and 2020, according to The Dallas Morning News.
Willie Baker, of Fort Worth, is the DFW chapter president of the fan group Niner Empire.
“In our chapter, we have 100 members. Just in our chapter,” Baker said. “My first NFL game was in 2014 [regular season] when the 49ers came here, and we took over their stadium. It’s an experience I’ve never had in my life. We’re rivals, but we had a bunch of fun.”
Kick-off is 3:30 p.m. Sunday. As of this writing, the Cowboys are six-point favorites in the game.