Oct 102012
 

One thing that has amused me since the start of this blog is the use of search terminology used to find this website. Many are very team specific, some are perverse, and others are just flat out funny. Over the past month, some of my personal favorites have been “why do saints fans wear rats”, “tony romo rat”, “ben roethlisberger is tebow minus jesus”, “why didn’t mark sanchez wear pink for breast cancer awareness”, and “broncos failure pictures”. It might be interesting to know the sources of why these search terms were used, but then again it might be pretty scary.

Anyway, I thought it would be at least a little entertaining to bring you the top ten search terms (by frequency) used to find this site over just the past month. Enjoy!

Top Ten Search Terms

#10: Seahawks Uniforms

Apparently most people find the ‘Hawks new unis pretty hideous, judging by the number of hits and the terms attached to these words. Danny Boy hit the nail on the head with his look at NFL fashion, or lack thereof.

#9: Football Widow

If there is a claim to fame for Gridiron Rats, it is that we have the best football widow on the internet. I love the fact that Rat’s Widow is (shhhh) willing to learn about the game, and that she has found a way to weave important social commentary into her posts about the NFL. This term is used every couple of days, so I know there are football widows out there looking for a kindred spirit. I think you found one here.

#8: NFL Breast Cancer Awareness/Wear Pink

A number of people have been looking for information on why the NFL players and coaches have been sporting the color pink, and why the NFL has chosen this cause. I hope you found your answer in this excellent article by Rat’s Widow.

#7: Gridiron Rats

I have to admit that this term surprised me a bit. Yes, that is our name, and yes, our readership has been increasing over the past month and a half, but I was surprised to see the frequent use of this search term. My guess is that someone (maybe… Country Preacher, perhaps?) just hasn’t bookmarked the site and finds it through Google. But whatever… it showed up on a regular basis.

#6: Dick Butkus

So I have no idea why so many of you are searching for Dick Butkus, but it is a frequently used term, often combined with “knee” and the number of searches really surprised me. Are there big Butkus fans out there? Did I miss something new about his knee? Danny Boy gets credit for putting this one on the map.

#5: Rob Gronkowski

The Summer of Gronk may be over, but the fixation continues. The monster tight end is having another good season despite playing through some heavy pain, and little sprinkles of news about Gronk and his gal-pal porn star bubble up now and again to make life interesting.  The nude spread for ESPN probably didn’t hurt any either.

#4: Patriots-Ravens Field Goal/Kick was good/Kick was wide

The kick that provided the Ravens’ victory over the Patriots was big news for the week that followed, but continues to be a source of traffic as people want to see close-ups and video of the kick. Glad to oblige.

#3: NFL Officials Lockout/Replacement Officials/Roger Goodell

There was a fair amount of rage regarding NFL officiating during  the officials’ lockout, as shown by some of the words attached to this search, with the word “suck” being the most publishable. Fans were not happy, and the topic dominated conversation on many NFL-related sites.

#2 NFL Boycott

Also in regard to the officials’ lockout, it seems that fans were looking for an organized effort through which to be able to send a message to the league about their dissatisfaction with the officiating situation. These terms were coming in before GiR announced our planned boycott of the NFL Network, which thankfully was averted by the settlement that was reached by the two sides. I sincerely doubt that we would have made much of a dent, but the lack of a settlement would no doubt have led to broader calls to boycott the NFL and its advertisers.

and the winner is…..

#1: Rex Ryan/Jets’ Coach

This has been the most frequently used search term to find this site, and I have no reason why. When I Google Rex Ryan it takes many pages to find a reference to our site, and the same holds true fr photos of Rex Ryan. Yet the hits are continual, occurring multiple times each day. Granted, we have had plenty to say about Sexy Rexy and his team, but no more so than any other football blog. In any event, Rex Ryan was a runaway winner, with more than twice the use of any other search terms. Thanks, Rex!

GiR Notes

I want to thank all of the Jets’ fans for coming over to read the site and take our poll this past week. As I noted in the poll results, I actually prefer it when the Jets are a good team, but that simply is not the case right now. While it is early enough in the season to be correctable and they fought hard against the Texans, they don’t execute well on offense or consistently enough on defense, and their play calling leaves a little something to be desired.

Similarly, I want to thank all of the Packers fans who have visited site over the next few days as a result of Country Preacher’s article. Yes folks, he really is a Packers’ fan. But he is right that the team is not executing particularly well right now, and not playing like a team. This is a difficult thing for Packers’ fans so recently after a Super Bowl championship, but the truth is there is something wrong in Wisconsin. It began last year with a lame playoff performance against the Giants, and they haven’t quite been the same since. Again, it is early in the season and very correctable, but the Preacher’s warning to the Packers’ faithful is a good one.

Finally, I have had some helpful dialogue with Seahawks fans who think I am vastly under-rating their team. I have had some good back and forth with some of their fans and have learned more about their squad, having only watched about a game and a half of their action so far. I was not, as some said, trying to determine the game based on statistics, but those stats do show some trends after five games. The Seahawks run well but are not a good passing team, and a rookie quarterback will have problems against a Bill Belichick team. The Patriots can defend the run well and have been better this season at preventing big plays, with some exceptions. On the other side, the Seahawks defense is the best in the league at present, and they have played teams with the potential (Cowboys, Panthers, Packers) to be explosive, but each of those teams is struggling. The Patriots have been really coming together on offense, and the Seahawks have yet to see an offense like this. As I said in my prediction, I can see Seattle keeping New England under 30 points, but scoring to keep pace is going to be a problem for the home team. None the less, I have found their fan base to be very knowledgeable, and I appreciate the feedback that I have been getting. I welcome one of their fans (or any opponent of the Patriots this season) to write a counter piece to my preview and prediction.

That’s all for now!

Sep 252012
 

UPDATED:

Obviously with the officials’ lockout resolved, we are calling off any plans to boycott the NFL Network on October 4th. As you will note from some of the other posts on this site, we are not particularly pleased with Commissioner Goodell’s handling of the lockout, but glad that the officials are back in place, which was the point behind a boycott.

Thanks to all who supported our call for fan action!

ORIGINAL POST:

Enough is enough.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell might be going through the motions to give the appearance that the NFL is seriously negotiating with the NFLRA, but it is clear that they are more determined to break the union than to maintain the integrity of the game that we love as fans.

Gridiron Rats is now calling on fans to step up and hit the NFL where it counts; in the wallet.

We are asking that all National Football League fans boycott the NFL Network on Thursday, October 4, including the airing of the Cardinals – Rams game on Thursday night. There is only one game on that night, and perhaps if the NFL takes a ratings hit and  grief from its sponsors, then they might actually get serious about putting the real officials back on the field.

Please share this call widely. If we can unite as fans we may be able to make the point that the NFL cannot continue to jeopardize the outcomes of games and the safety of players. We want the integrity of the NFL restored, and to see the product that we have come to know and love as NFL fans.

Our goal is to see the game restored and to see the proper NFL officials on the field. If the NFL can come to a resolution by October 4, then this boycott will be canceled. Otherwise, we ask you to stand with us as fans.