— Pepsi (@pepsi) September 2, 2020
Father and son, Tim and Pat Dougherty are lifelong “Yinzers”. The Doughertys have been season ticket holders since the early 1970s. The pair have been attending games for nearly 20 years, and Tim for more than 50 years.
“If you’re from Pittsburgh, you’re a Steelers fan — first and foremost,” said Tim Dougherty in “Every Game is a Home Game.”
“[We’re] all Yinzers, and proud of it,” Dougherty said. Both sides of his family are Pittsburgh natives.
Sadly, Tim was diagnosed with cancer in 2019. He had to undergo treatment and was not able to make it to Heinz Field. While Tim is now cancer-free, the looming pandemic has made it unlikely that the Steelers will be playing their home games in front of fans this season.
Pepsi and the NFL wanted to do something special for Tim and Pat to show their appreciation for being dedicated Steelers fans all these years. And what better person to team up with on the project than Pittsburgh’s former Pro Bowl linebacker Ryan Shazier.
Since the Doughertys won’t be able to go to Heinz Field this season, Ryan decided to take Heinz Field to the Doughertys. With the help of the stadium crew, Tim and Pat’s seats were removed and presented to them at their home by none other than Shazier himself.
“The Steelers are something they lean on, that brings joy to their lives,” Shazier told Steelers Wire. “With them not being able to go to the games this season and what’s going on with their lives, I thought it would be a great experience to bring the seats to them.”
As Shazier headed up the sidewalk to the Dougherty home, he thought about what Tim and Pat’s reactions would be when he knocked on the door. “I wondered, Are they going to know who I am?.”
“I was really excited to be able to talk to [Tim and Pat] and be able to bring those seats to them,” Shazier said. “It was amazing to be a part of bringing that experience to them. To see the excitement in their faces when I got there. It was great to be able to spend some time and get to know them. They showed me all of their season tickets, all of their signed memorabilia. It was amazing to see all of the things they’ve experienced as Steelers fans.”
“It was a great opportunity to be able to do something for someone who deserved it. Their family has gone through a lot of adversity, and they’re just as much of a Steeler as I am. They might be more,” Shazier said with a smile. “Tim has been a season ticket holder since 1973. I wasn’t even thought of then.”
When asked if he channeled his inner Mean Joe Green when filming the spot, Shazier said, “Nobody’s as good at Joe. I tried my best. I wanted to be able to represent the Steelers and Pepsi the best I could and bring the same joy that Joe did for that kid to this family.”
You can watch Tim and Pat’s story about life, love, loss and football with Pepsi’s “Every Game is a Home Game”. Shazier surprises them with the best gift of all — seats from Heinz Field.
The short film is the latest initiative in Pepsi’s larger “Made for Football Watching” campaign which spotlights and celebrates the “elite” football watchers around the country and helps bring the stadium experience home to them.