If you're not a dedicated professional football fan, you may encounter some very dejected friends or co-workers tomorrow without knowing why. Here's a quick guide to help you navigate the land mines.
Football, for better or worse, remains America's most popular sport. It's also America's most popular thing. According to Nielsen, in addition to its legions of loyal men, twice as many women tune in to watch the Super Bowl (50.4 million) each year than either the Academy Awards (24.5 million) or the Grammys (23.8 million). "Sunday Night Football," to boot, is now "ranked No. 4 among women 18 to 49 years old, behind only 'American Idol' (Wednesday), 'The Voice' and 'American Idol' (Thursday)."
With another weekend of playoff football over, the odds of you encountering someone whose football dreams have been recently crushed have multiplied again. If you care to offer any solace whatsoever (or perhaps want to rub salt in someone's wound), here's what you need to know.
The weekend losers were the New Orleans Saints, the Carolina Panthers, the Indianapolis Colts, and the San Diego Chargers. The Saints lost a heartbreaker on the road to the Seattle Seahawks. The Panthers were upended at home by the San Francisco 49ers. The Colts kept it close against the New England Patriots before stumbling to a road loss. The San Diego Chargers made things interesting late against the Denver Broncos, but couldn't pull off a comeback.