New Improved Website Locked and Loaded
By: Mark Solway 
Posted: 2006-07-07
Category: Washington Redskins News
You may have heard about it - you might even have been anxiously awaiting it - but the new www.thehogs.net (THN) is finally here. It took most of the offseason to get done, as well as a lot of blood, sweat and tears; but hopefully it was worth the wait.

So what's changed?

Pretty much everything actually. The site was completely re-designed so that it could hold more content, be more navigable, and just offer Washington Redskin fans a better web experience than on the previous site. Gone is the framed layout that made bookmarking individual pages at THN an effort in futility. Gone is a lot of the Flash that made it so difficult for Google to spider all of the great features at THN. We incorporated virtually every feature from previous versions, with a few whole new sections for you to enjoy as well.

Redskins Podcasts - Looking for podcasts about your Washington Redskins? Well look no further. Starting in July, THN will be podcasting regularly. Scott Hurrey and Mark Solway will lead off the shows to start, but by the start of the season there may be more. The new website has a sample podcast from Scott that goes over some of the new features at the site. Rather than re-iterate them here, visit the podcast section to download and listen to the mp3. Over the next month, we will be tinkering and fine-tuning the podcasts, but we hope to be running full 'boar' by training camp.

Blogs - Web logs are sweeping the internet and THN thought it pertinent to introduce them for the sake of giving Redskin fans a voice that will be heard by other Redskin fans. Some of THN's community has expressed the desire to express their opinions -- members like Fios, joebagadonuts, chaddukes and NikiH. The goal of the blogs is to have daily entries and thus, more daily content for you the Redskin fan. We have some sample blogs posted that were used to check some functionality, so there is already lots there for you to look at. Check out the blogs section here. There is a listing of the latest blos and a link to them on the bottom of the main page of the site as well.

Articles - The articles section has also been re-designed. There is a new advanced search page to help you find the THN story that you're looking for - you can search by keyword, title, date, author or any combination of the four. This specific article is actually the 700th article written by THN, so it seemed prudent to help you look around. There is also a new page that will list all of our exclusive articles in one listing for quick reference, or you can view a paginated list of the articles. Content has always been what drives the THN community, and hopefully the new articles section will help accentuate that.

THN Huddle - The section where you'll find all NFL news not relating to the Redskins. The Huddle isn't a new section, but it is a new format. This great resource now constantly polls the internet for the latest results. This page constantly displays the top 60 headlines from around the NFL. It also displays 10-15 NFC East specific articles for the Redskins' division foes - the Eagles, Cowboys and Giants. Best of all, it updates itself every 15 minutes or so, giving you a perpetual resource for getting your football 'fix'. Click here to visit THN Huddle.

Redskins Gameday - Gameday isn't a new feature either, but it is in a whole new format. In the past we have provided all of the information that a fan needs for a game in one handy spot; team rosters, team records, injury reports, win/loss records, who they played the week before and who they play the following week, key player match-ups and even a brief synopsis by the staff on what you can expect to see in the game. Well that's all still there. The major difference being that this year, it's all going to be put into a printable PDF file for you. THN will post game day approximately 48 hours before every kickoff. Each week, THN members will be able to go to the Gameday section, print off the guide, and have a very handy game day program to have beside you in your favorite armchair location. Like watching the game alone? Why not download and print a game day companion that won't bother you during the game? Be sure to make the Redskins Gameday section part of your regular weekly regimen.

Redskins Team Information - Obviously fans need raw data about their Redskins and that's what the Team Information section is all about - Redskins schedule, roster, transactions, depth chart, coaching staff, front office and a new Redskins salary cap table. The new cap table has been updated and we will endeavor to keep it up-to-date constantly. Many of you are constantly in search of Washington Redskins salary cap information, so this new page is just for you.

Typically 'cap tables' are very awkward to both read and understand. We've stripped down all of the rhetoric and put together what we think is the most legible cap table on the web. Just scroll down the left-hand side to find the name that you're looking for... and the number to the right of it, is that player's cap number. The numbers in the chart that follow to the right of that value just explain where that value comes from - you can even ignore them if you like. Find the player - check the number to the right of his name, and you have that player's cap hit for the current season. We will be building some more features and even some interactivity into the cap table, so stay tuned for more!

Redskins Wallpapers - What would a Redskin site be if it didn't offer some nice Redskins wallpapers for your desktop? Thanks to Scott Peek, we're launching the new site with some brand new wallpapers for you to download. Some of the new players featured are Santana Moss, Mark Brunell, Jon Jansen and Chris Samuels. There are also some new 'generic' wallpapers including a 'schedule' wallpaper containing the Redskins' entire 2006 NFL schedule. You will find the wallpapers in the new 'Fan Zone' option of the drop down menu, along with some other new features like the 'Places to Watch' and 'Places to Listen' pages that Scott outlines in his inaugural podcast.

THN Wireless - What? Wireless options for a Redskin fan? That's right folks, now you can get some of THN's great features right on your PDA or cell phone. THN has created a pared own version of some of its website specifically for use in a wireless environment. Redskin fans will be able to look at rosters, the Redskins' schedule, THN's articles, who the Redskins play next, latest Redskins' transactions and more. There is even a link to our message boards that will allow users to read or post to THN from virtually anywhere. You'll definitely want to bookmark the wireless section if you're someone who needs a Redskin fix while you're on the go.

Site Information - There's even more to the new version than will be laid out here, but you can always visit the new Site Information section to learn more about THN. In the Site Info section you will find contact information, staff member information, advertising information, how to support the site, and more. You can also find the new THN site map there that can serve as your guide to everything you'll find here. You'll also find a link to that site map at the bottom of every page on the site.

There's even more that could be outlined, but isn't part of the fun of a new toy just playing around with it? We invite you to do just that... look around, familiarize yourself with all of the new things that are offered here. They've all been designed with one goal in mind - to help you the Redskin fan bleed burgundy and gold just a little bit harder.

We hope that you'll enjoy the new site and join us in spreading the word. You will find a 'Recommend' button at the bottom of every page. Use it to get the word out about the new THN to all of your Redskin friends. Thanks for making us your Redskin headquarters, and thanks for your continued support.

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