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The 35 Stages Of Preseason Football, Life's Biggest Tease

First you're optimistic, then you're pessimistic, then you're optimistic, then you're pessimistic, and THEN the season starts.

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1. The NFL season is right around the corner.

2. You're glad your team wasn’t picked for Hard Knocks, but...


3. ... You still want some action. You're getting pretty antsy.

4. You’re so over baseball.

Harry How / Getty

5. You spend more time prepping for your fantasy draft than your full-time job.


6. You’ve overanalyzed coaching changes, draft picks, free agent signings.

Al Bello / Getty

7. You have expectations.

Kevin C. Cox / Getty

8. No matter how terrible you’ve been in the past.

9. Every preseason comes with new beginnings.

10. So you buy a new jersey.

11. Order a fresh pair of Zubaz pants.

12. Then camp opens.

Orlin Wagner / AP

13. You read EVERYTHING about practice.

14. Then your star player hurts his knee.


15. The troubled talent gets suspended for weed.

16. Someone gets filmed saying the WRONG thing at a country concert.

Yong Kim / AP

17. Now you start avoiding all social media out of superstition.

18. Because every time you read it someone else gets hurt.

19. By the time the first preseason game rolls around you’ve just about given up.

20. Then out of nowhere HOLY SHIT your team looks like a Super Bowl favorite.

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21. You immediately forget why you were pessimistic.

22. Because holy shit — we can make some noise this season!

23. Then you remember your young RB has a fumbling problem.

MIKE STONE / Reuters

24. Then week 2 of preseason is a little worse.

25. You start hearing the QB can't handle the playbook.

26. The defensive coordinator says the LBs can’t tackle.

27. Week 3 is a smidgen better.

28. Cue QB controversy.

Matt Slocum / AP

29. You cut the troubled talent who you would've sworn was going to be a Pro Bowler.

30. You realize week 4’s game doesn’t matter. None of these games mattered.

31. Why do you even care about football? You start complaining that players these days aren't tough.

Gregg Segal / Time

32. And the playcalling is too predictable.

33. But you pull yourself together. You pray to the football gods.

Ronald Martinez / Getty

34. Take a deep breath.

35. And only then, after a lifetime of worthless stress and anxiety — only then does the season start.

Ronald Martinez / Getty Images
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