May 8, 2014; New York, NY, USA; Dallas Cowboys fans (from left) Karl Clemens and and Bret Hood and Patrick Thompson from New York and Jorge Espinosa from New Jersey react as the Dallas Cowboys select offensive tackle Zack Martin (Notre Dame) as the sixteenth overall pick in the first round of the 2014 NFL draft during the 2014 NFL draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The 5 Stages of Fan Reactions: Post NFL Draft

For us NFL junkies the draft is a big occasion, it’s like the Super Bowl but every team gets to participate. This year’s draft in particular carried even more anticipation with the combination of two extra weeks to debate and the uncertainty over how the top 10 picks were going to go. For fans, the reactions to the draft picks are always over the top. Here are the most common stages a fan goes through after the NFL Draft.

Stage 1: Immediate Overreaction

This goes for either approving or disapproving of the pick. There is no happy medium or “meh” involved in the immediate reaction to your teams’ first round draft pick. You either love him and he’s the reason you guys will be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy in February, or he’s the worst pick you’ve ever heard of and he’s going to ruin everything!

Stage 2: In-depth analysis

At this point you feel the urge to justify your immediate overreaction so you take to social media or any other forum and start in on heavily defending or criticizing the pick. You pull out all the stops, the half-billion mock drafts you did in the months leading up to the draft, 40-times, their sophomore year performances, their 3rd Grade teacher’s recommendations, anything to prove your point.

Stage 3: Attack-mode

After you’ve overreacted and then backed up your position, you now must destroy everyone who disagrees with you. At this stage you will need to regress back into the in-depth analysis so you can bolster your opinion, but mostly you’re starting arguments with strangers at Denny’s because you can’t understand why anyone else wouldn’t think this was an awesome/awful pick.

Stage 4: Smack talk

Once you get frustrated with having to defend your position and you run out of people to argue with, you can now enter the stage where it’s free to smack talk on what the other teams in your division did in the draft. Chances are you think they did a horrible job and it just reaffirmed your position that your team is the superior one. Even if you disagree with your teams’ pick, you’ll find comfort in saying, “At least we didn’t pick that guy.”

Stage 5: Acceptance

Now that some time has passed, and all the “experts” have handed out their various grades on the draft, you’re in a much better place to accept the new rookies your team has added.  You will find the column, sound bite, or article which backs up your opinion the most, or just maybe, you’ll realize your initial reaction was off and you now hold the opposite opinion on who your new guys are. Either way, you’re content and ready to debate on how many games your team will win or you’re packing your bags for training camp, just a few months early.

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Tags: 2014 NFL Draft 2014 NFL Mock Draft NFL