The NFL is the most popular sports league in America, with millions of fans tuning in to watch their team every single week. And in the Buckeye State, thanks in part to Ohio sports betting, both the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns garner plenty of attention.
This got us at BetOhio.com thinking, how do the ups and downs of NFL games across the state’s teams affect supporters? And which fanbases across the entire NFL were the most affected by their team’s results during the 2022-23 season?
We’ve also determined which fans are the most emotional overall, to give an insight into the true passion they feel for their squad as a whole.
How did we get here? We surveyed 2,000 NFL fans of different ages and genders to discover which fans are the happiest when their team wins, and which teams’ supporters feel the most downbeat after losing a close one.
Wait, Browns Fans Have the Fourth Happiest Fanbase?
Yes, you're reading that correctly. By our calculation, the Cleveland Browns, the team that has had 12 different head coaches since 2000, with only 3 winning seasons in that same time frame, actually come in as the 4th happiest fanbase in the NFL currently.
How can this be? Well, it seems Cleveland faithful have learned to appreciate the rare wins.
Browns fans posted an impressive index score of 9.17 on our happiness scale, a simple average of responses from 2,000 NFL fans of all ages and genders that provided a score between 1-10 for each question, where 1 = not happy/not sad and 10 = very happy/very sad.
Why the high ranking for Browns fans? Well, the team appears to have finally found a suitable head coach in Kevin Stefanski, and added their quarterback of the future in Deshaun Watson (who obviously came with baggage). Plus, Browns fans last year were finally able to wave goodbye to Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger ahead of last season, who had largely owned the Browns throughout his career.
But maybe we're burying the lede. Over at Caesars Sportsbook Ohio, the Browns are just +110 to make the playoffs next season, which are pretty good odds considering this franchise's history!
Maybe all those factors combined have Browns fans a little cheerier than we all thought!
Bengals Come In As 8th Unhappiest
On the flip side of the Browns, Bengals’ fans came in eighth place for the unhappiest fanbase, with an index score of 5.92 – yikes. Unlike Browns fans, it appears supporters of the Bengals feel pretty emotional when their team loses.
What’s more interesting is the Bengals’ fans' level of happiness for their team, coming as far down as 27th place on our scale (8.42). But maybe if this data came from a different NFL season, things would be different, as the Bengals entered last season as a Super Bowl favorite across Ohio betting apps after just barely losing the previous Super Bowl to the Rams. This season, the Bengals Super Bowl odds are second only to the Chiefs.
But come on Bengals fans. Another 5-10 years of Joe Burrow should have them being a little more optimistic! At BetMGM Sportsbook Ohio, Burrow is the favorite to win the regular season MVP at +500, ahead of Patrick Mahomes (+650) and Josh Allen (+750).
The NFL Fanbases With The Biggest Range of Emotions
To see how emotional fans really are, we also combined each fanbase’s happiness and sadness scores to determine their overall score as emotional supporters.
The most emotional fanbase might go to the fans of the New Orleans Saints, who came first (15.59), but if we’re speaking more locally, it seems the Cincinnati Bengals have one of the least emotional supporters, compared to most.
With a score of 14.34 on the emotional scale, coming 21st, it seems the highs and lows of the NFL don’t affect fans quite as much as others like the Los Angeles Chargers (15.56) and the Panthers (15.49). (Worth noting: the Chargers suffered a humiliating playoff defeat to the Jaguars in January, while the Panthers fired their coach in Week 5).
Next up on the emotional fan scale was New York’s very own Buffalo Bills (15.19), followed by the Buccaneers, with a score of 15.15. Then came Green Bay Packers supporters (14.91), and Las Vegas Raiders (14.85), while fans of the Minnesota Vikings had an overall emotional score of 14.79.
Rounding out the 10 final NFL emotional team supporters after the Vikings were the Kansas City Chiefs (14.79) and New England Patriots (14.74).
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