Typically speaking, sports fans tend to worry about two things – the past and the future. They’ll debate who was the greatest player of all-time, while also spending hours discussing whether or not a rookie is going to be develop into an All-Pro.
Both are fun exercises, things that keep fans engaged and the beer flowing at the local tavern. But they miss out on what is most important – the present.
Forget about yesterday. Never mind tomorrow. Let’s talk about today.
Who are the best players in the NFL right now? Who can help a team win the Super Bowl this season? Who is writing a legacy with each passing week?
Those are the questions the editors at cover32 seek to answer in this series, “Top 10 in 2014.” In the coming weeks, every position – as well as head coach, general manager and other off-field areas – will be graded, evaluated and ranked.
The series wraps up with the most important people attached to any organization – the fans. Without them, there’s no reason to play the game. And without the right group of them, it’s very difficult for a team to succeed. Fans provide a home-field advantage, create the buzz that makes a franchise attractive to free agents and provide motivation by being just the right degree of demanding.
Let the debate begin!
10. Oakland Raiders
Yes, the Raiders have the worst attendance – in terms of percentage of capacity – in the NFL, as only 80 percent of the seats at the dump they call home are filled on a weekly basis. But who would want to visit that place? On every other scale, Raiders fans are among the best. They are loyal (sticking by their team), passionate (dressing up in costume) and knowledgable (seriously, talk football with a few).
9. New Orleans Saints
Yes, they’ve had a very good team to root for in recent years, one that almost always wins at home. But when 99.9 percent of the seats at the Superdome are filled for every home game, in a market that is still recovering financially from Hurricane Katrina, it says a lot. The people in New Orleans truly love the Saints, and that’s not an overstatement.