Sportsball, 2019 Week 1 Preview Edition: Part I (Are You Ready??)
First, a quick warning to regular Valley of Steel readers: today we are introducing, in the words of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, “something completely different.” While our purpose for existing remains sharing the good word about what’s happening in the world of music, this new feature (which is intended to be a semi-regularly recurring segment) revolves around a very different sort of heavy metal; specifically, the gridiron.
In case that still isn’t clear enough, we will be taking some time today (and tomorrow) to analyse the sport known around the world as amerikanischer Fußball, and domestically (here in the home of the National Football League) called simply football. As someone who has been voraciously devouring football news and stats for years, and as someone who already uses the written word as a way of exploring other lifelong passions, it just feels natural for me to experiment with writing about the sport. Sporadically, at least — if you aren’t a sports fan, don’t worry, maybe just skip this article and your regularly scheduled music news and reviews will continue coming your way very soon.
But for everyone else: tonight (Thursday, the 5th of September) will kick off the NFL’s 100th season, and we’ll be presenting you with a brief preview of all thirty-two teams. The previews are divided up into the sixteen match-ups that will be featured between now and Monday night, in case you want to quickly scroll through to find your favorite team. Half of them are included in this article, and the other half will be coming out tomorrow.
The main point here is to look at some of the major stories and trends that could shape each team’s season, rather than predicting the results of each specific game. However, you may also notice that each team has been listed with their current win-loss record (which, of course, is 0-0 for every team as of right now) next to their predicted record over the full season. These predictions are the result of an extensive series of proprietary calculations and data modelling based on the information currently available — but as the season progresses, the overall predictions will be updated based on new data and information, as new Sportsball articles are published. So just for fun, feel free to check back to see how right or wrong the outcomes in today’s preview (including the current expected playoff picture and Super Bowl teams, which will be included in tomorrow’s Part II) turns out to be!
Oh, and one last thing — as a fundamentally music-related website, I couldn’t help sneaking in a few references, albeit oblique ones, into the blurb about tonight’s participating teams. So anyway, please enjoy this preview, and then enjoy this weekend’s games. Feel free to voice your own opinions in the comments below, or argue over on Twitter like the cool kids do.