Who doesn’t like free? And who doesn’t like great iPad apps? When the two come together it’s good stuff. With that in mind, we’d like to share our Best Free iPad App of the Week here every weekend.
This week’s pick is one for the NFL fans – The Daily’s Pro Football Guide 2011. As the name just might suggest, it’s from The Daily, the first ever iPad-only newspaper.
This app is like one of those big, special pullout sections in a Sunday newspaper to preview the 2011 NFL season – but better. It’s got tons of good information, presented really well – and should serve well as a guide to the new season, a useful reference, and just a nice way to get even more ready for some football.
I’m a huge sports fan and this NFL season is off to a great start (did you catch the season opener Packers vs. Saints?) – so I’ve really enjoyed spending time with this app. Here are some of the notable features and highlights of the app:
— There are three full pages on each NFL team. The first page shows 7 interesting facts about last season, this season, and star players; as well as three brief items: The Key Player, Make the Playoffs If, and The Biggest Question. The second page has the team’s full 2011 schedule with The Daily’s predictions for each game; and also a quick 5 question trivia quiz – if you swap to portrait view, you see the ‘Grading the Depth Chart’ section. The third page offers a Fantasy Watch section with some Sleeper and Don’t Touch picks, and also a Gambling Tip section with things like each team’s odds to win the Super Bowl, details on a team’s record vs the spread in particular scenarios (e.g the Eagles since 1992 when they allow an opponent to get 100 yards rushing) and lots more along those lines.
— The page for each of the NFL’s divisions features an excellent video breakdown by former standout receiver Amani Toomer. In portrait mode you also see predicted records for each team in that division from The Daily’s Chris Corbellini.
— Navigation in the app is very slick – with several good ways to get around. You can tap on the top right button to see a coverflow style view of each team’s page, tap on the thin blue bar at the top of screen to see thumbnails for each page and jump to any of them with a tap, or tap on The Daily at the top left to get to a page listing all the divisions on the left then the teams in each of them on the right and jump to any from there. And of course once you’re on any of the individual pages you can just swipe through magazine style.
— The Playoffs section shows The Daily’s breakdown and predicted result for each game in each round of the playoffs, right through to the Super Bowl.
— You can submit comments on each team page – by text or audio and via Facebook or Twitter.
My only bone to pick with the app is that some of the pages require you to be in portrait view to see all the content – including the page for their Super Bowl pick. I find that annoying.
Overall though this is a great app for NFL fans. It’s also just the sort of stuff I’d love to see The Daily do more of. It feels like the sort of content that a leading newspaper or magazine should produce on topical subjects. I hope this app is successful for them and encourages them to bring out more similar titles.
If you’re after more great free iPad apps, be sure to check out our previous choices for Best Free iPad of the Week.