I just picked up a pair of Gridirons during the sale that I love (v tread sole). I suppose the football grain isn't for everyone and may be a little casual for some offices, but IMO they are more versatile than you would imagine from the AE website photos. Leather seems really sturdy and I was in a little rain last week, it "beads off" more than my regular calf AEs.
It's my understanding that grain textured leather is (always? usually? sometimes?) corrected grain, which would explain this effect.