If you attended last weekend's record-breaking, seven-plus-hour Miami Dolphins game, you know that going to a football game can be more trouble than it's worth. Between the rising prices of, well, everything, the traffic, and the overall declining on-field product, staying local and opting to spend a fraction of the money and time at a local sports bar or pub makes much more sense. Plus, if you happen to be a fan of an out-of-town team, you have no choice other than to seek out a great place to watch the game or drop hundreds of dollars on an NFL ticket.
Finding a good place to watch the game is only half the battle, though. Finding a friendly environment with like-minded fans cheering for the same team is top priority. It's never been more important than it is today to have a go-to place to watch your favorite NFL team disappoint you each Sunday. Here are several options.
1. For Miami Dolphins fans: Funky Buddha Brewery. As if you needed another reason to visit the biggest and
2. For New York Jets fans: Hammerjacks. So you're a Jets fan. Here you are. That happened. There is no going back now (unless you're Fireman Ed), so you might as well find your tribe. (And we might as well help you do that, mainly so you're all in one place and not bothering the rest of us.) Hammerjacks is a bar inside a bowling alley were Jets fans stage watch parties every week. You might think the previous sentence is a joke, but it's a totally serious thing on which we are totally not passing judgment. Not only is Hammerjacks a Jets bar, but also, according to our in-depth research (asking Jets
3. For New Orleans Saints fans: Shuck-N-Dive Cajun Café. Shuck-N-Dive is as "Naw
4. For Pittsburgh Steelers fans: Butcher Shop Beer Garden & Grill. When you think of the Pittsburgh Steelers, you think of pierogis and French fries on sandwiches. The Butcher Shop has pierogis, and you're free to do whatever the heck you want with your fries because this is America and you're a grown-ass adult. The Butcher Shop is actually home to multiple teams' fans every NFL Sunday, including the Jets, the Steelers, and the Dolphins. But the food — an unbelievable selection of prime cuts of meat and delicious sausages — is straight outta the 'Burgh. One of the favorites, the chef's selection sausage platter ($30), comes with pretzel bread, caramelized onions, and a side of Bavarian mustard. If you're really hungry during the game, the bone-in rib eye ($39) or short ribs ($20) both make the cut. What are yinz waiting for? 65 NW 23rd St., Miami; 305-846-9120; butchershopbeergarden.com.
5. For Philadelphia Eagles fans: Lost Weekend. If you're looking for a place to watch the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles, Lost Weekend is the spot. Every weekend, fans — including members of the local Eagles Facebook Fan Club — congregate at this South Beach spot to take in the game while enjoying drink specials and playing pool. The bar's restaurant, the Alibi, serves a damn good Philly cheesesteak ($11) as well as the usual bites you'd expect from a traditional sports bar (wings cost $14 for a dozen). If there were ever a time to get off your ass and meet some fellow Eagles fans, it would be the season immediately following a Cinderella run to the Super Bowl. Ask Dolphins fans — they'd celebrate in the streets with pots and pans if the Fins won even a single playoff game, much less the Super Bowl with a back-up quarterback. 218 Española Way, Miami Beach; 305-672-1707; sub-culture.org/lost-weekend-miami.
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6. For New England Patriots fans: Boston's on the Beach. Some of the picks on this list are surprising. This is not one of those picks. The place is called Boston's, and you're looking for the best place to watch the New England Patriots play. Even if it's all the way up in Delray Beach, it's obviously the best place to spend several hours glued to TV screens while wearing your Brady jersey. Each Sunday, Boston's rolls out red-carpet specials during Pats games, including $3.50 drafts, five-for-$19 16-ounce buckets, and $4 16-ounce singles. Food-wise, you'll find all the regional favorites: clam chowder ($7.95), crab cakes ($13.95), mussels ($14.95), New England clambake (MP), and, of course, lobster (MP). Between the drink specials, like-minded fans, and authentic New England cuisine, Boston's is a no-brainer for Pats games and well worth the drive. 40 S. Ocean Blvd., Delray Beach; 561-278-3364; bostonsonthebeach.com.
7. For Dolphins fans (and the rest of you poor fools): Tom's NFL American Sports Bar & Grill. This is Miami New Times — damn right we're gonna name a second Dolphins location. Some bars are just bars, no frills, just the necessities. Tom's NFL Sports Bar is just that. And no "Where to Watch the NFL" list is complete without a place that literally has "NFL" in its name. Though the bar plays the Dolphins fight song after every Fins score, the word on the street is a lot of low-key Dallas fans like to watch Cowboys games at Tom's. The bar is close to the airport and surrounding hotels, so on any given Sunday, you're bound to find a melting pot of die-hard fans of any team. Really, if you're in the area and need a cold one and some Buffalo wings, this is the place. Tom's is a true dive bar, but in every positive sense of the term. If you take your NFL seriously and hate being bothered by patrons who seem more intent on distracting from the game than pumping their fists at the TV, Tom's is the spot. 5001 NW 36th St., Miami Springs; 305-888-6022; tomsnfl.com.