Stores in Connecticut wasted no time putting New England Patriots AFC Championship gear on their racks.

Dick's Sporting Goods in Manchester was open at 6 a.m. on Monday so fans could get a jump on the celebration.

"A lot of people crying [Monday] morning," said Rick Scagnelli of Manchester. "A lot of people happy.”

Scagnelli was the first in line at Dick's.

"For my son, my son is a big fan and I like to get him a shirt when they win so he can go to school and show it off," he said.

Gima Sport in Hartford kicked off its production of championship hats around the same time.

Owner Roberto Giansiracusa told Channel 3 that his business was prepared for the games to play out in every scenario.

Now, Gima is making thousands of Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles hats. Those should hits stores by Monday afternoon.

”We had everything set up, ready to go," Giansiracusa said. "We just didn’t know who it was going to be, and then once we found out last night, we took the hats of Minnesota off the line and Jacksonville.”

Hot off the press! .@GimaSport in Hartford is pumping out @Patriots hats just hours after they clinched the AFC Championship! #wfsb— Sujata Jain (@SujataTV) January 22, 2018

Some of those hats are already on store shelves. Giansiracusa said the Eagles hats will be shipped out both Monday and Tuesday.

He said he expects to have more orders pouring in given the die hard fans on both sides.

”Both sports towns," Giansiracusa said. "Very similar passion, real love for their team and their cities, so it’s exciting.”

The Patriots defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 24-20 on Sunday in Foxborough, MA for their eighth trip to the Super Bowl.

It was a nail-biter for Pats fans as the team was down for the first three quarters of the game. However, quarterback Tom Brady led a late-game comeback.

Brady has five Super Bowl wins to his name, including last year's come-from-behind victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

Needless to say, fans are pumped.

"We did it last year, we won the Super Bowl this way. We came from behind and [from last year], we took the win," said David Plaza in Waterbury. "You've seen the comeback last year."

New England fans said win or lose, they'll be huddled around the television for the big game.

"The whole family goes to my uncle’s house and watches whoever plays, so we’re looking forward to that," said Melissa Delaney of Ellington.

"Same thing we always do," Scagnelli said. "We have a little get together at out house with family and we just enjoy the day, watch the game and hope to win.”

The Pats will take on the Philadelphia Eagles, which defeated the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, in Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4.

Copyright 2018 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Digital Content Producer

Recommended for you