Man Was Reportedly Caught Flying Drone Over Falcons Super Bowl Practice At Rice University


Just days after a reporter accidentally walked away with a backpack containing Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan’s playbook and game plan at Super Bowl media night, more controversy is in the air – literally.

According to, a man was caught flying a drone over a pre-Super Bowl Atlanta Falcons practice. The Falcons have been holding their practices at nearby Rice University.



HOUSTON – The Atlanta Falcons have been practicing at Rice University in the days leading up to the Super Bowl, and an eager fan apparently got crafty in trying to sneak a peek.

“With the field situated next to a residential area abutting the Rice campus, there was extra security between the edge of the field (with a fence and high hedges) and the neighborhood, so the Falcons could feel secure running a practice as though they were at their home facility,” today’s pool report issued by the NFL said.

It went onto note there was a brief security “heads up” when the organization noticed something buzzing above. Someone had sent a drone flying over the practice field.

The drone operator was described only as an area resident, and it wasn’t clear if he or she would face any charges. But the device was grounded, the report said.

Drones are subject to Federal Aviation Administration guidelines, and the FAA has issued a Super Bowl advisory: “The airspace around NRG Stadium in Houston is a No Drone Zone for the Super Bowl. Temporary Flight Restrictions will prohibit certain aircraft operations, including unmanned aircraft operations, or drones, within a 34.5-mile radius of NRG Stadium in downtown Houston, Texas on game day. The restrictions will be in effect from 4 p.m. to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 5.”

Even on non-Super Bowl days drone operators must adhere to lengthy guidelines. Among them are rules involving flying a drone over people and over sporting events.