It seems like I write one of these “There’s a light at the end of the tunnel, Steelers fans” articles every year, and there’s a reason for that: I have a weekly quota.
But, also, I hate the NFL off-season. And not because of the drama—I actually like that from a writer’s perspective. Not because of all the draft talk and mock drafts, either—again, a necessity for a writer who must come up with a few commentary pieces each and every week. No, the reason I hate the NFL off-season is right there in the name—it’s the off-season.
What respectable NFL fan enjoys the off-season? It’s so gosh darn long and arduous. However, I will say this about being a writer who also does a weekly podcast—two tasks that require the Googling of “Steelers news” on a daily or every other day basis: It makes the off-season just fly by.
Why, it seems like only yesterday that I was writing articles about how people absolutely, positively had to find a way to work through whatever chasm existed between receiver Antonio Brown (gratuitous click bait AB reference) and the organization—including the boss, head coach and quarterback with an owner’s mentality.
I wrote that on New Year’s Day. It’s now June 1 as I write this filler piece that has nothing to do with anything other than I was sitting around on Memorial Day and thought to myself, “Wow, the NFL off-season just flew by.”
It's true that there are still close to two months to go before the Steelers take up residence in Latrobe, Pa. There are also over three months to go until Mike Tomlin has his troops ready to open up the regular season against your World Champion New England Patriots on Sunday Night Football. This will obviously happen two weeks before he won’t have them ready to play against the 49ers on Sunday Afternoon Football.
But getting to June for an NFL junkie such as myself is the equivalent of boarding a plane to go to a tropical destination. Sure, you still have a long flight ahead of you, but the planning is over, the packing is done and the money is already spent.
All you have to do now is get to your tropical destination. Once there, you get to spend the rest of your vacation on autopilot.
That’s how the NFL season is for me once the Steelers get to training camp. The stories come at you more organically. You don’t have to pen contrived pieces such as, “Yay, it’s June!”
It’s just so much better.
For me, personally, I get to comment on things I kind of know about such as football, and I no longer have to worry about faking my way through all of that draft stuff (“Yeah, I agree, his hips are stiff.”). (Seriously, I spent the first 38 years of my life enjoying football just fine. People thought I knew what I was talking about. “You know your football!” they would all say. Then, I started writing for this site, and suddenly, people were like, “You don’t know how to diagnose a defense, you fraud!”.)
At any rate, I know you’re not supposed to wish your life away, and I plan on thoroughly enjoying my summer. However, I will do so while also looking ahead to the fall and the first cool, crisp Sunday afternoon when I’m sitting around watching a 1 p.m. game in my living room recliner.
Yay, it’s June, Steelers fans!