The Eastern Michigan Eagles football team opened their season on Saturday and wanted to make a big entrance in front of their home fans by sledgehammering a brick wall during pregame introductions. Unfortunately, it was a failed effort. Apparently, the organizers of this entrance did not take into account that brick walls are actually pretty tough to knock down.
The NFL Preseason officially kicks-off its full schedule tonight (if you don't count the Hall of Fame Game from last Sunday) and I could not be any more excited. Sure, preseason games don't really count, but there are still plenty of great reasons to be invested in the preseason this year. Here are my top five reasons why you should be watching:
Cures Your NFL Football Withdrawal
When the clock hit zero in the Super Bowl on February 2nd, football fans everywhere immediately went into football withdrawal. Sundays were not the same. Monday nights were not the same. Food stopped having flavor. Colors were not as bright. The last two may be a stretch, but not by much. While the preseason is just exhibition games, getting to see your favorite players suit up and hit the field still gives you that dose of football that you were longing for.
When I woke up this morning, I had no idea what an important day that today was. That was until I saw this tweet from ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter:
50 days! I couldn't believe the season was that close. As a football junkie, I wish that the football season went all year long, but alas, it doesn't. So the football shaped hole in my heart has been filling itself with anticipation for the upcoming season. The more I thought about the season that is oh so close, I started thinking about all the things I'm looking forward to this football season. The list was getting long, so I said let's do 50 reasons to look forward to the 2014 season. Here we go:
1. Johnny Football
2. Fantasy Football
3. NFL Red Zone
4. Because 'Merica
5. Bad Lip Reading Videos
6. Finally back to REAL football after watching too much soccer
7. Super Bowl
8. Touchdown Celebrations
9. Tom Brady vs. Peyton Manning
10. Excuse to eat more buffalo wings
Over the weekend, Johnny Manziel set off a media frenzy when he showed up and partied in Las Vegas, including attending UFC 173 (see above) as well as a pool party with fellow NFL-er Rob Gronkowski. What was everyone so worked up about? Well, it made people start to wonder whether or not Johnny Football had the focus to be a great quarterback in the NFL or whether partying would cause his downfall.
I decided to debate the only person who is able to match wits with me — and that person is me.
Red = Big Deal; Blue = Not a Big Deal
Me: Thanks for taking time to talk about this.
Me: No problem, happy to do it.
Me: Okay, let's get started. Anyone who thinks that this is not a big deal is blind to the past of Johnny Manziel. One of the questions coming into the draft was Manziel's focus and whether or not he was more wrapped-up in his own celebrity persona than actually playing football. This just is another confirmation that he is not going to cha...
Me: Let me stop you right there. After winning the Heisman Trophy following his 2012 season at Texas A&M, the media scrutiny on him grew exponentially. Yes, he partied. Yes, he had fun. Which is not much different than 99% of other college students. If partying was a big deal that would distract Manziel, than you would have guessed that he would have struggled in his following season. But he didn't. In fact, he put up BETTER statistics. Who's to say he can't succeed in the NFL?
In addition to all the other stories we can tell about last night's events — the unseasonably warm weather, the great performances by Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and that absolute whomping the Seahawks gave to the Broncos — there are the stories about ticket prices.
Now that the game is over, I can say this about ticket prices: the story that's told depends greatly on how you look at the data.
For tickets listed on TicketNetwork.com — both before and after we knew the teams for the big game — the overall average selling price was $2,656, the lowest it has been in four years. However, it was only just barely the lowest in four years. For the 2012 game, the overall price was $2,670. Despite this game having a lot against it — a cold-weather city, an unprotected venue, and a lineup that had to travel very far from home — the overall price was only 5% lower than last year.