“Pass interference!” “Offside!” “We always get bad calls!”
No matter which team you’re betting on this season, one thing all NFL fans can agree on is that there’s nothing worse than a whiner, whether the complaint is warranted or not. Regardless of who’s doing the complaining, this unsportsmanlike conduct is unbecoming of players, coaches, and fans alike.
But who’s guilty of complaining the most? We surveyed over 5,000 NFL fans across the country to identify the biggest complainers in the league. Unfortunately, this isn’t something you can bet on, because it would have made for some interesting wagers. It would have been especially interesting to bet on here in Michigan, where betting became legal in 2019.
When we asked fans to tell us which team’s fanbase complains the most, respondents did not hold back. Fans of the Dallas Cowboys were ranked as the single worst fanbase in the NFL when it comes to whining, most often due to using a victim mentality. Fans of the New England Patriots followed closely behind, while fans of the Buffalo Bills, Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles took the final spots in the top five.
What drives people craziest about other fanbases? Most often, using a victim mentality, complaining on social media and “bad” officiating. Fans also cited the inability for fanbases to get over old losses and fans calling into sports radio stations to air their grievances as other ways that whining gets under their skin.
So, for the sake of your team, you might want to think twice before you become a dreaded Monday morning quarterback.
With a record four Super Bowl MVP awards (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XLIX, and LI) as well as three NFL MVP awards (2007, 2010, 2017), Tom Brady can add one more accolade to his trophy case: the biggest NFL quarterback whiner.
The former New England Patriot and current Tampa Bay Buccaneer was ranked as the worst quarterback in the NFL when it comes to complaining, according to fans. He was followed closely by the Patriots’ Cam Newton – whose infamous post-Super Bowl interview will never be forgotten. Josh Allen (Bills), Aaron Rodgers (Packers) and Nick Foles (Bears) rounded out the quarterbacks who were voted as the worst complainers by NFL fans.
Players should keep in mind that complaining, whether on the field or off, is a dealbreaker for most fans. In fact, almost half of respondents (47%) said that they have unfollowed a player on social media due to their complaining. Other fans (43%) took things one step further and admitted to unfriending someone they knew on social media due to their sports rants and opinions.
Like their players, coaches are guilty of complaining as well by shouting from the sidelines, screaming at officials and even throwing down their headsets. But the award for whiniest head coach goes to Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots. He was followed closely by John Harbaugh (Ravens), Sean McDermott (Bills), Matt Nagy (Chicago Bears) and Matt Rhule (Carolina Panthers).
Whether you’re a fierce follower of the NFL or a fair-weather fan, these results might make you think twice before whining about the next bad call or posting about it on social media.
From September 22 to October 8, 2020, we surveyed 5,103 people to determine which NFL players, coaches and fanbases complain the most. 57% of respondents were male and 43% were female. The average age of respondents was 36 years old.
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