|Kluwe has come strong with the tweets this year. (US Presswire)|
We need Twitter. We need it to get us through our days. Whether we're watching a sporting event on TV or trying to navigate the boredom of a work day, Twitter is always there, providing us the info we need and the color we crave (of course, it also provides us with plenty of info we don't need or particularly want).
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If you're an NFL fan (or an NFL writer), Twitter is a necessity. And we appreciate those accounts that entertain and inform us every day. If they can make us laugh, even better. Which is why this Top Ten with a Twist list might be the most important one we provide this season (as was the 2011 version and the one from 2010.)
These NFL players, writers and analysts WILL enrich your life. You might just have to wade through a big pile of crap to get to them.
10. Chad Johnson (@ochocinco): Two years ago he was No. 3 on my list, but since then he's played for the Patriots -- playing for Bill Belchick probably stifled his creativity -- and been cut by the Dolphins after a domestic issue with his then-wife. Now, he's divorced and unemployed. This account isn't tremendously funny anymore, though he does have his moments. But it's interesting to watch Johnson try to keep himself optimistic and hopeful about his NFL Career. Recent tweet: With so many beautiful women in the world curious to how VS models are picked. I'm sure it's an excruciating process, anybody know?
9. Pro Football Focus (@pff): These guys provide interesting commentary on each game and each player by extensively studying film each week and then telling us who charted well and who didn't. PFF's methods and opinions certainly have their detractors, but the team's dedication is also mighty impressive. Recent tweet: If you missed it yesterday, @PFF_Sam looks at the play of Evan Mathis, a bright spot for Philly.
8. Greg Aiello (@gregaiello): More than a year after the end of the NFL lockout, Aiello's twitter account has grown a little tamer (his snarkiness toward the NFLPA made for some interesting tweets). But the NFL spokesman still does the league's fans a service by taking some of its news right to them. He's a big Notre Dame fan, but you shouldn't hold that against him. Recent tweet: Between weather disasters, we need Weather Channel's Jim Cantore as an NFL sideline reporter or inside info guy or something.
7. NFL Memes (@NFL_Memes): I first became aware of this account earlier this season, and though it doesn't always hit a home run for laughter, it's amusing often enough to warrant inclusion on this list. Because if you can't laugh at your teams or at your teams' biggest rivals, why bother being on Twitter at all? Recent tweet: It's a miracle! (Ed. note: click the link)
6. Andrew Brandt (@adbrandt): The former Packers vice president (where he negotiated contracts and maintained the team's salary cap) is now an ESPN NFL business analyst, and Brandt does a fine job breaking down player contract and player personnel news. Recent tweet: Problem for rookies like @RGIII and Russell Wilson is CBA won't allow renegotiations until after Year 3. Another rookie sacrifice.
5. Faux John Madden (@fauxjohnmadden): To me, this account is the king of NFL parody with far more home runs than strikeouts. It's not easy to make me laugh out loud with a tweet, but FJM can do it consistently. Recent tweet: Kansas City Powerball winner now has more money than Matt Cassel and likely is a better quarterback too.
4. Jonathan Vilma (JonVilma51): Before the Bountygate controversy, I don't think I'd ever been interested in the Saints linebacker's Twitter account. But as an outspoken critic of the way the NFL has handled the New Orleans franchise, Vilma is fighting his PR battle through his tweets. He's outspoken that he's not guilty -- despite the year-long suspension originally imposed on him by Roger Goodell -- and he takes his outrage directly to his fans. Recent tweet: here's a recap of yesterday's hearing "blah blah blah blah bounty bullsh** still dragging on blah blah blah witchhunt blah blah blah blah
3. Arian Foster (@ArianFoster): He was No. 1 on our list last year, and the Texans running back still strikes me as perhaps the most interesting NFL player out there. But it seems like his Twitter game has slipped a bit. Hey, it's OK, though. He's still one of the best tweeters around (and probably the best from a Zen perspective). He's just been overtaken for the top spot on this list. Recent tweet: Dream dream dream dream dream dream dream dream dream Dream BE WILLING TO DIE FOR IT! Dream dream dream dream Dream dream dream dream dream.
2. Seth Payne (@PayneNFL): A former defensive tackle who played in the NFL for 10 years with the Jaguars and Texans, Payne is now a radio show host in Houston. And he's damn funny. In fact, for my money, he's the funniest NFL tweeter around. Make me laugh consistently, and you get placed high on this list. Recent tweet: I'm not as funny in person as I am on Twitter, which wouldn't bother me except that they said the same thing about Stalin.
1. Chris Kluwe (@ChrisWarcraft): Whether you agree with the Vikings punter -- from what I gather, he's awfully left-leaning, at least on marriage equality -- or like to hear this thoughts about the world of fantasy game (World of Warcraft and things of that ilk), you can't argue with his humor or his passion for the causes he represents. He's not afraid of Twitter fights, and though some have wondered if his Twitter obsession affects his daytime job, it's an easy call to make him the No. 1 NFL tweeter of 2012. Recent tweet: In real world news, the fact that Lamar Smith is serving as House chair for Science, Space, and Technology tells you how much we value them.
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Josh Katzowitz on Twitter here: @joshkatzowitz.