The 2022 NFL campaign was one to be remembered. Patrick Mahomes’ Kansas City Chiefs are approaching dynasty-like status, while Joe Burrow and the crop of young talent within the Cincinnati Bengals look like they could be contenders for years to come. In the NFC, the Philadelphia Eagles have returned to prominence once again, and if they can hang on to quarterback Jalen Hurts, they may well hold the NFC hostage over the next few years.
Of course, the 2022 season was not one to remember if you are a fan of the Green Bay Packers. At times it looked as if Aaron Rodgers was marshaling a team of high schoolers throughout the campaign and despite that, he dragged his team kicking and screaming to being in playoff contention. Those hopes were at once extinguished when the Detroit Lions picked up a shocking 20-16 victory at Lambeau Field.
The new campaign gets underway in the fall and it’s no surprise to see who the early favorites for the crown are. Bovada’s NFL odds and lines currently make the reigning champion Chiefs the favorites for glory, closely followed by the Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Philadelphia Eagles, and San Francisco 49ers. It stays to be seen if any one of them can live up to their superstar billing.
As we all know, the NFL is America’s most prominent sports league and has been for over a century. With 32 teams currently playing, it is a massive industry that generates billions of dollars annually. In fact, it is the most lucrative sports league in the entire world, closely followed by the Indian Premier League (cricket) and the English Premier League (soccer).
However, some franchises stand out more than others in terms of popularity, prestige, and global brand recognition. In this article, we will be discussing the four most popular franchises in the NFL, and what makes them so unique.
Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers are widely regarded as one of the NFL’s most popular teams. Their intense and devoted fan base transcends geographical boundaries, and the franchise boasts supporters from not only all-over North America but all over the world as well.
One would usually associate the team’s popularity with its success. The Packers tasted victory in the first two Super Bowls, winning the championship in back-to-back seasons. But many attribute the popularity to the franchise’s unique ownership model, where the fans own the team themselves. They are the only team in the league that runs this way.
The Packers have experienced immense success over the years. They have lifted the Lombardi Trophy on four separate occasions as well as picked up nine conference championships over the years. Their most recent success came back in 2010 when quarterback Aaron Rodgers led his side to a memorable 31-25 victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Dallas Cowboys are one of the most recognizable brands in not just the NFL, but in the whole of American sports. The brand symbolizes an idealized version of America and has one of the largest fanbases in the world. Their stadium is often sold out, a fact made even more impressive considering that said stadium has a capacity of 105,000.
The Cowboys are the most successful team in the country in terms of television ratings, and their merchandise sales are also the highest in the league. As such, it’s no surprise that they are on this list. The Cowboys have picked up five Super Bowl wins throughout their storied history, including three Lombardi’s in four years in the early 1990s.
The Texas-based outfit also has a long-standing rivalry with the aforementioned Packers and whenever the pair square off, it is always a can’t-miss affair.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have been a dominant force in the NFL for decades. They have won six Super Bowls, tied for most with the New England Patriots. However, their superior record in The Big Game – winning six and losing two, compared to the Pats who have suffered five defeats en route to their six titles – makes them the most successful franchise in NFL history.
They have a strong and enthusiastic fanbase that has supported them through both good and bad times. The team is popularly known for its “Steel Curtain” defense that revolutionized the sport of football. They have had some of the game’s most iconic players like Ben Roethlisberger, Terry Bradshaw, Franco Harris, and Lynn Swann who have contributed vastly to their many successes.
New England Patriots
The New England Patriots have been the most successful team in the NFL since the turn of the millennium. They have appeared in nine Super Bowls since the year 2000, winning six of them. They also became the first team in history to complete a perfect 16-0 regular season back in 2007, however, they were stunned by the New York Giants in the Super Bowl at the end of that campaign.
Throughout their most successful period, they were led by head coach Bill Belichick – who is still in charge to this day – and quarterback Tom Brady, who was the backbone of the team’s dominance over the years. Between 2011 and 2018 they had a remarkable seven-year stint in which they made it all the way to the Conference Championships in each season, winning five of them and converting three of those victories into Lombardi Trophies.
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