Ravens fans, consider yourselves warned…this investigative report will expose the NFL’s love of the Pittsburgh Steelers at the highest levels.
One of everyone’s favorite questions to be asked is always, “What do you want for Christmas?” For as many years as I can remember, my response has always been, “Anything with a Ravens logo on it.”
After being the easiest person to shop for in the history of holiday shopping, I think I’m going to change up my approach this year. If you have ever seen my wardrobe collection or Ravens room, it’s quite obvious that I am one of the NFL’s best customers.
This season has been great for the Ravens when it comes to the Steelers so far, but the anger that courses through my veins every time I see their logo remains at an all time high. When I received the latest catalog from NFLShop, I basically found myself thumbing through 58 pages of fury.
While picking out potential items for Christmas, I do not want to have to substitute a Ravens logo over a Steelers logo in my mind. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what most people will have to do, regardless of who your favorite team may be.
People may call me crazy or biased on this approach but I wanted to justify this to myself and prove that I’m onto something .Or, maybe I am just starting to go a little overboard when it comes to my dire hate towards Western Pennsylvania Towel Wavers. Whatever.
I sat at my desk and counted every single standalone item in the latest NFLShop catalog. Excluded from my count are staged “themed rooms” overloaded with merchandise, the cover, and any uniform spread that featured all 32 teams.
Now, the covers of these magazines will be different depending on which region of the country you live in. I am still baffled that every magazine I receive has Steelers related merchandise on the cover even though I live in North Carolina and am two hours from the Panthers.
Now, onto the results.
Guess which team was featured the most?
That’s right….the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Throughout the catalog, the Steelers had 28 standalone items featured.The (SUPER BOWL CHAMPION!) Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears with next with 22 items each.
Having six items more than the second place teams may not seem like all that much, but let’s also take into account that a full 40% (13) of NFL teams teams didn’t even have six items featured TOTAL. Let’s also take note (but not factor into the statistics) that the Steelers also had a full page spread of Steelers themed game room in addition to the aforementioned cover.
The average amount of items per team was 9.03 and only 13 of the 32 franchises had more than ten total impressions. For those wondering, the Ravens finished with 11.
Even if I didn’t dislike the Steelers so much, I would be disappointed as a fan of many other teams that received limited or no exposure. The Jaguars, Titans and Lions were only featured twice. The Panthers, Buccaneers and Seahawks were only featured once—and the Cardinals and Rams weren’t shown at all.
Regardless if the team is good or not, the NFL should at least take pride in the team logos and creative merchandise seen on the sidelines each Sunday. Showing little or nothing of a team’s merchandise isn’t good for either business or the fan base.
NFL licensed apparel is expensive and I want to have a pretty decent idea of what the item is going to look like before I purchase it. The internet is a very easy alternative but why have a catalog if you’re just going to push everyone online to begin with?
I know the NFL has plenty of money and won’t really hurt by me asking for other things besides Ravens merchandise this holiday season. However, they did make it an easy decision when they filled my mailbox with a Steelers-filled catalog of junk.
I now have something else to wipe my hindquarters with besides a terrible towel. Thanks NFL!