The Big Game -the Super Bowl- marks the official end to the NFL Season. Most fans had their seasons “end” back in December and/or January. New York Giants fans are fortunate enough to enjoy a lack of finality for a few weeks more than fans from 31 other teams. It feels great to be the World Champions. Again.
However, the commonly spoken of high does only last so long. The fact that there are no more Giants games to prepare for is a harsh reality to face. While quite a number of die-hards are still basking in the XLVI glow, many have already shifted their focus onto other sports. Some choose to get deeper into their hockey teams fighting for playoff spots while others choose to watch every single basketball game and prepare for March Madness. And, hey – pitchers and catchers is already in effect for most MLB teams…
But what about the Big Blue Faithful that just cannot seem to let go- what do they do to “get their fix”? There’s still an NFL Schedule. It just doesn’t have actual games on it until August:
- February 20: Application of Franchise Tag Begins
- February 22-28: NFL National Combine
- March 5: Franchise Tag Deadline
- March 13: Free Agency Opens (4pm: Buckle up!)
- Mid-March: College Pro-Days/personal workouts scheduled
- March 25-28: NFL Owners’ Meeting
- Mid-April: Team Offseason Programs Begin
- Late-April: Full 2012 NFL Schedule Announced
- April 26-28: 2012 NFL Draft
- Mid-Late July: NFL Training Camps Open
- August 4: Pro-Football Hall of Fame 2012 Class Enshrinement
- August 5: Hall of Fame Game
- Early August: NFL Training Camps Close/ Pre-Season Games Begin with Hall of Fame Game
- Late August- Early September: Roster Cuts (x2)
- September 6: 2012 NFL Regular Season Begins – with the New York Giants (at home, showing off Lombardi #4)
As one can see, there’s plenty to keep the football talk going until the regular season arrives. It’s just going to be fueled mostly by gridiron theory, hypotheses and, of course, opinion.
The NFL Combine has technically started and up until fairly recently, hasn’t been focused on much. Now that NFL Network televises these national workouts and covers them for almost a full week, it educates fans on invited NFL Draft prospects that were possibly never seen or heard of.
NFL Free Agency is probably the most insane time, as the rumors and speculations from all over run a muck – until the actual team report comes out or an official statement is released. It can be so much fun and so aggravating all at once as it goes on for months.
The NFL Draft changed its format a few years ago (2010) to a three-day event from the two-day format that was frankly draining. Day one is only the first round now and an evening of “expect the unexpected” and disappointment for some, honestly. Either way, it’s where teams begin to take their upcoming season form. It’s where the scouting draft boards make or break a team for the future. Teams’ compensatory draft picks should be announced after the Owners’ Meetings in March.
Post-Draft is where the real lull begins and any news is chomped at from May through mid-July…until the training camps officially open and reports begin to flow in. Anticipation slowly builds for the first real snap of the rock – in the Hall of Fame Game, August 5, 2012.
Hey, it’s live football and a pre-cursor to September 6.
- Be sure to "like" Giants 101 on Facebook and to follow Giants 101 on Twitter
- Text "oneteam" to 20222 to donate $10 to the One Team for the Lights charity initiative.
- Purchase your Super Bowl XLVI gear through Giants NFL Shop
- Get your tickets to All In: A Super Bowl Champion Show
- Get your very own "GMEN" t-shirt (as seen on Michael Strahan at the Super Bowl XLVI ceremony)