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2012 NFL Preseason Power Rankings

Green Bay Packers PhotoIt’s no secret that popular teams in major sports markets like the Dallas Cowboys, Chicago, Bears, New England Patriots, NY Giants, NY Jets, Pittsburgh Steelers etc., all demand top dollar for tickets regardless of competitiveness.   However, ticket price is often dependent upon not just the popularity of the team but also the success.      Although any team with strong fan support that is a legitimate Super Bowl contender is likely to have some rather pricey tickets on the secondary market, many ticket speculators often forget that even less popular teams with small fan bases can see major spikes in ticket prices during seasons in which they are contending for a playoff spot.

Below we break down the Top 10 NFL teams in terms of anticipated ticket demand.  Obviously, these rankings are largely based on popularity and fan support but preseason outlook is also given considerable weight in our analysis.

2012 NFL Preseason Power Rankings

1.  Green Bay Packers

The Packers may not be in a large market but they more than make up for that with the passion of their fan base.  The Packers may have fallen short in their quest to repeat as Super Bowl Championship but Aaron Rodgers and company should be back in the mix once again.

2.  New England Patriots

The Patriots are ranked either #1 or #2 in most preseason rankings and should be in contention for another Super Bowl if Tom Brady can stay healthy.  We all know how sports crazy the Boston area is…

3.   New York Giants

The Giants are the defending Super Bowl Champs in the largest city in the US…enough said.

4.  Denver Broncos

The Broncos surprised a lot of people last year with a less than spectacular Tim Tebow at the helm.  The arrival of Peyton Manning has Bronco fans very excited and it is already reflected in tickets prices for 2012-13 games.

5.  Chicago Bears

Fans in Chicago are extremely excited to see what Jay Cutler can do with a bonafide #1 WR in Brandon Marshall.  With an aging Bears defense this might be do or die time for the franchise.

6.  Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers always seem to be competitive and always sell out Heinz Field.  There is no reason to think that will change this year.

7.  Detroit Lions

The Lions made a big return to relevancy last year.  Football fans in Detroit love their Lions and they should have plenty to cheer about with a nasty defense and a dynamic offense led by Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson.

8.  San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers were the sleeper team last year.  As such they quickly rebuilt a fan base that left them after the Joe Montana – Steve Young eras after finishing 13-3.  The 9ers should be a force again this year with the top defense in the NFC.

9.  Philadelphia Eagles

Many expected the Eagles to be a Super Bowl contender last year after lining up a dream team of free agents.  However, last year was a complete disaster proving once again you can’t buy a championship.  However, the Eagles have too much talent to be held down any longer.  Combine that with the ravenous fans in Philly and ticket demand will be considerable.

10.  New York Jets

J-E-T-S, Jets, Jets, Jets fans always come out and support their team.  While they aren’t likely to be in any conversations about the Super Bowl, they should contend for a Wildcard spot.  Should QB Mark Sanchez go down and Tim Tebow take over…look out!

Just missed the cut:  Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans, New Orleans Saints

Sleeper Team:  Washington Redskins – If RG3 can be half as effective as Cam Newton was in his rookie campaign, the Redskins could contend for a playoff spot.  Skins fans have been itching to get behind this team and a return to relevancy could mean a huge spike in ticket prices.

 

 

Top Weekend Events 10/28 – 10/30

Hello Wednesday and happy weekend before Halloween!

While, once again, the top weekend events list is dominated by college football, a few other events did manage to make the list.

First and foremost being the UFC Fight taking place between BJ Penn and Nick Diaz in Vegas.  This will the Diaz’s first fight since 2006.  His supporters say that he has transformed from a mediocre boxer to one of the best strikers in the division.  The fight was originally supposed to be between Diaz and Georges St- Pierre until St-Pierre sprained his knee.  This fight has had so many ups and downs already, that it should prove to be a very interesting event.

In other non-NCAA related football happenings,  Corey Smith will be playing in Jacksonville, FL.  The country singer has shown up on the top events weekend list before.  His booze-driven lyrics are very popular with the college-aged crowd.  He’s one to watch.    Of the oddball singers to appear on this list is Roger Hodgson, the British musician and songwriter and former co-front man of the band Supertramp.  He has been performing solo since 1984.

The top college football game this weekend is Auburn vs. Ole Miss…two strong Southern teams will take on each other.  While neither is in any contention for the SEC championship title (who can compete against the LSU tigers anyways?), it should still be a fun game.  There’s still a slim possibility of the the Auburn Tigers getting ranked, if all the cards and starts align. 

Obviously, Big-Ten teams always draw a huge crowd and fans flock to see the games.  This is a pivotal game for Illinois, as this could set the tone for the remainder of their season, particularly since they lead the Big Ten in rushing yardage per game.  Penn State is still expected to come out ahead in this game though.

 

Top Weekend Events 10/28/2011 – 10/30/2011

1.)   UFC 137 Penn vs. Diaz, Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas, NV – Saturday, October 29

2.)    Auburn vs. Ole Miss, Jordan-Hare Stadium, Auburn, AB – Saturday, October 29

3.)    Penn State vs. Illinois, Beaver Stadium, University Park, PA – Saturday, October 29

4.)    Georgia vs. Florida, EverBank Field, Jacksonville, FL – Saturday, October 29

5.)    Corey Smith, Florida Theatre, Jacksonville, FL – Friday, October 28

6.)    Roger Hodgson, Salle Wilfrid Pelletier, Montreal, QB – Saturday, October 29

7.)   Steelers vs. Patriots, Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA – Sunday, October 30

8.)     Michigan vs. Purdue, Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI – Saturday, October 29

9.)    Oklahoma State vs. Baylor, Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, OK – Saturday, October 29

10.) Minnesota vs. Iowa, TCF Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MB – Saturday, October 29

Have a fun and safe Halloween, everyone!

Top Weekend Events 10/21 – 10/23

We’ve made it. We’re more than halfway through the week.  Yahoo!

This weekend’s top events list is, um…odd.  What an odd grouping of events.  Sure there’s still plenty of college football on the list, but some of the games are not expected to show up on the list.  For instance, what’s up with the New Mexico vs. Hawaii game?  I have to imagine it’s kind of a limited audience that would attend this game, no?  Perhaps fans are just eagerly waiting to see if their place-kick block issues will be resolved?

For your obvious games to make the list, clearly the Notre Dame vs. USC game will have a big draw.  Both teams recently had blowout wins (Notre Dame over Air Force and USC over Cal) and are looking to dominate each other. 

And, have you realized the Texas A&M has shown up on the top weekend events list for the past 3 weeks?  Those Texans love their football.  As do the Okies.

For your non-football events, this weekend, the Talladega Speedway will be busy with the Sprint Cup Series.  The AMP Energy 500 (aka Good Sam Club 500) is one of four races that are currently run with restrictor plates. And the Coca-Cola 250 has been an exciting event held since 2006.  It was first held as the John Deere 250.

Sir Elton John leads the top weekend events list with his Vegas show.   John began his new show “The Million Dollar Piano” in Las Vegas in September at Caesars Palace, where he will perform at for the next 3 years.    Just recently, he performed his 3000th concert.  Wow! In his four-decade long career, he has sold more than 250 million records, earning him the honor of being one of the most successful artists of all time.

And, if you weren’t aware, Yo Gabba Gabba! is a kids show currently on Nick Jr.  Interesting point, Yo Gabba Gabba! was not invented by studio execs, but by two SoCal dads with no TV experience.   It is now a HUGE deal with the 2-4 year old sect.

Top Weekend Events 10/21/2011 – 10/23/2011

1.)    Elton John, Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, NV – Friday, October 21st

2.)    Oklahoma vs. Virginia Tech, OU Memorial Stadium,  Norman, OK – Saturday, October 22nd

3.)    Notre Dame vs. USC, Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN – Saturday, October 22nd

4.)    Joaquin Sabina, American Airlines Arena, Miami, FL – Sunday, October 23rd

5.)    Yo Gabba Gabba, Charleston Municipal Auditorium, Charleston, WV – Friday, October 21st

6.)    AMP Energy 500, Talladega Super Speedway, Talladega, AL – Sunday, October 23rd

7.)    New Mexico State vs. Hawaii, Aloha Stadium, Honolulu, HI – Saturday, October 22nd

8.)    Andrew Bird, Grand Opera House, Wilmington, DE – Saturday, October 22nd

9.)    Talladega 250, Talladega Super Speedway, Talladega, AL – Saturday, October 22nd

10.) Texas A&M vs. Iowa State, Jack Trice Stadium, Ames, IA – Saturday, October 22nd

Top Weekend Events 10/07/11 – 10/09/11

Woo hoo…it’s practically the weekend.

I think, foreseeable future, the Top Weekend Events list should be renamed as The Top College Football Games this Weekend list.  Although, it should be noted and highlighted that a concert made the list this weekend.  Taylor Swift’s Dallas show has attracted much fan interest and people are still clamoring for tickets.

Of note for college football this weekend especially is the Georgia vs. Tennessee game.  This is a big, big game in the SEC East.  If Georgia wins this game, their game with Florida on 10/29 will be a deciding one.  It could potentially decide who wins the division.  Georgia is expected to win this game, but only by a slim margin.

Last weekend, Auburn’s win over South Carolina surprised many; however, neither Auburn nor Arkansas has much of a chance at winning the SEC West title.  That title is pretty firmly in the LSU Tiger’s hands.

The Texas Oklahoma game should be exciting, even though it seems like it’s received ZERO media attention.  Texas is currently ranked 11th in the country, and no one seems to notice.  Oklahoma is expected to win this game, but if Texas were to pull through, that would be huge!

Nebraska vs. Ohio is only considered a big game since it’s a Big 10 matchup.  The OSU Buckeyes have had a pretty poor showing lately, and it shouldn’t be of any surprise if they lose to the Cornhuskers.

And even though Texas Tech may take an early lead, the Texas A&M Aggies should be expected to overthrow the Red Raiders easily.

Top Weekend Events 10/07 – 10/09/2011

1.)    Notre Dame vs. Air Force, Notre Dame Stadium, South Bend, IN – Saturday, October 8th

2.)    Texas vs. Oklahoma, Cotton Bowl, Dallas, TX – Saturday, October 8th

3.)    Nebraska vs. Ohio State, Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, NE – Saturday, October 8th

4.)    Northwestern vs. Michigan, Ryan Field, Evanston, IL – Saturday, October 8th

5.)    Taylor Swift, Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Dallas, TX – Saturday, October 8th

6.)    Clemson vs. Boston, Memorial Stadium, Clemson, SC – Saturday, October 8th

7.)    Arkansas vs. Auburn, Razorback Stadium, Fayetteville, AR – Saturday, October 8th

8.)    Texas Tech vs. Texas A&M,  Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX – Saturday, October 8th

9.)   LSU vs. Florida, Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA – Saturday, October 8th

10.) Tennessee vs. Georgia, Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, TN – Saturday, October 8th

Top Weekend Events 09/30/2011 – 10/02/2011

Hello Wednesday!  Can you believe October is pratically here??  What happened to the summer?

Just looking at the top weekend events list below, can you guess the trend?  I was pretty spot on with the top NCAA Football games to watch, wasn’t I?  There’s a couple games there that didn’t make my previous list such as the ECU vs. UNC game, South Carolina vs. Auburn, Fresno State vs. Ole Miss, Minnesota vs. Michigan and Buffalo vs. Tennessee. 

With the Gophers vs. Wolverines, while each team has a strong following given their Big-10 Status, Michigan is expected to easily crush Minnesota.  Sorry guys!

The Pirates vs. Tarheels game should be exciting as two home-state teams goes head to head.  ECU has shown a lot of progress this year already, even though they previously lost to two very competitive teams; Virginia Tech and South Carolina.  North Carolina’s schedule has been a bit easier so far, but expect East Carolina to give NCU a run for their money.

Auburn and South Carolina again both have HUGE followings.  Ohandalso, the last time these  two teams were on the field together, it ended with the Tigers embarrassing Steve Spurrier’s Gamecocks in last year’s SEC Championship game, 56-17.  South Carolina will be out for revenge.

Neither Fresno State nor Ole Miss is a particularly stellar team, but the Rebels are getting a lot of attention lately because of Coach Houston Nutt.

The Tennessee Vols are the Dark horse of the SEC conference this year.  Hopefully they can start to turn things around and be the exciting team they used to be.

 

Top Weekend Events 09/30/11 – 10/02/2011

1.)     Wisconsin vs. Nebraska, Camp Randall, Madison, WI – Saturday, October 1st

2.)    VA Tech vs. Clemson, Lane Stadium, Blacksburg, VA – Saturday, October 1st

3.)     Florida vs. Alabama, Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, FL – Saturday, October 1st

4.)     East Carolina vs. University of North Carolina, Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC – Saturday, October 1st

5.)     South Carolina vs. Auburn, Williams-Brice Stadium, Auburn, AL – Saturday, October 1st

6.)     Kentucky vs. LSU, Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA – Saturday, October 1st

7.)     OSU vs. MSU, Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH – Saturday, October 1st

8.)     Fresno State vs. Ole Miss, Bulldog Stadium, Fresno, CA – Saturday, October 1st

9.)     Minnesota vs. Michigan, Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI – Saturday, October 1st

10.)  Buffalo vs. Tennessee, Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, TN – Saturday, October 1st