MILWAUKEE (AP) — Hundreds of Milwaukee bar patrons who hoped to score free drinks through its offer to pay their tabs whenever the New York Jets, and former Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, lose had to pay up after the Jets got an overtime win despite an injury that took Rodgers out of the game.
Jack’s American Pub announced its “Jets Lose, You Win” promotion two weeks ago, offering to pay the bar tabs of all participating customers when the Jets — and Rodgers — lose. Patrons faced conditions, including that Rodgers had to start the game and their tabs had to be opened 15 minutes before kickoff.
During Monday’s game between the Jets and the Buffalo Bills, many customers at the Milwaukee bar cheered, sensing a free night of drinking, when Rodgers left in the first quarter with an injury. That injury turned out to be a torn left Achilles tendon that ended Rodgers' debut season with the Jets. But the team went on to win the game 22-16 in overtime, dashing customers’ free drink hopes.
Following Rodgers’ injury, bar owner Scott Schaefer said people began ordering more drinks because they felt more certain of a Jets loss. He said emotions in the bar were “mixed” when they ended up winning.
Olivia Fallon, a manager at Jack’s American Pub, said about 350 patrons took up the bar’s offer Monday night and the average tab ended up being between $50 and $60.
“But there was some outliers. There was a $160 tab, a $130 tab, here and there," she told WDJT-TV on Tuesday, calling Monday night one of the bar’s biggest nights of the year.
With Rodgers now out for the season, Schaefer said his establishment still wants to do a promotion related to the Jets, but the bar has not yet determined what that will be.
“We’re going to try to do something else. We want to see what happens over the next couple of days,” he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "We want to keep the promotion going, but in what form, we don’t know.”