On Friday, the subreddit /r/NFL published the results of an extensive poll conducted to determine which team had the best uniform in the NFL. The poll asked over 12,000 participants "Do you like [team name]'s jersey?" and "Rank it on a scale of 1-10." This allowed the reddit user Antitypical to break down the data in a way that everyone could enjoy.
The final results have the Raiders with the coolest uniforms, followed by the Steelers, 49ers, Vikings, Packers, and Bears. The Cowboys finished in a virtual tie with the Patriots in the middle of the pack.
According to the numbers, 53.7% of the people polled liked the Cowboys uniforms, and gave it a 5.60 grade on a 1-10 scale. Antitypical intuitively understood that
there must have been Eagles fans involved in this poll division rivals in general were likely to systematically rate each other far below other teams and adjusted the results accordingly.
Problem is, when you're America's Team, it's not just the division rivals that hate you, the haterade is coming from all over. At the same time, you end up with some unexpected allies.
And as such, the best takeaway from this research isn't that football fans think the Cowboys' uniform is pretty average; it's that the research quantified the love and hate flowing between the fans of each franchise. Here are the ten teams, in ascending order, that hate the Cowboys more than anything else, along with their grade compared to the overall Cowboys average of 5.60.
10. San Diego Chargers (-0.15 vs. average grade) - Perhaps the distaste here is driven by the occasional joint training camp practices, perhaps it's that Norv Turner (a former Cowboys coach) was their head coach for a while, perhaps they are still pissed that Jerry Jones didn't buy the Chargers but opted for the Cowboys instead. In any case, a -0.15 qualifies as a mild dislike at best; nothing to get upset about.
9. Houston Texans (-0.18) - Surprisingly benign score from the in-state rivals. Then again, even in a state as big as Texas, the Texans remain the junior varsity team and forever in the shadow of the mighty Cowboys. See, the Cowboys define football. The Texans just play it.
8. Arizona Cardinals (-0.28) - Some residual resentment from the days when the Cowboys and Cardinals were division rivals up until realignment in 2002.
7. Cincinnati Bengals (-0.34) - I recently met a classmate from high school and it turns out she was still pissed about something I apparently said 30 years ago. I have no recollection of ever having said anything to her, but that's the way it sometimes goes. I have no idea what we've ever done to the Bengals to have them dislike us, but it is what it is.
6. Seattle Seahawks (-0.39) - After decades of mediocrity, their recent success has drawn a lot of bandwagon fans who seem to be envious that their team has nowhere near the universal appeal the Cowboys have - despite the Cowboys themselves also wallowing in mediocrity for the last two decades.
5. New Orleans Saints (-0.40) - Not quite the interstate rivals the Texans are, but the close proximity still means familiarity breeds distress.
4. Carolina Panthers (-0.42) - The Carolinas used to be and still are a stronghold for Cowboys fans. Many fans of the upstart Panthers therefore abandoned the Cowboys at some point and still feel guilty about that, which they try to hide by resenting the Cowboys. Also, the relative proximity to Philadelphia has made Panthers fans buy in to the moronic idea that you can only be a fan of a team in your home state or home city.
3. Detroit Lions (-0.63) - Still butthurt.
2. Washington Redskins (-1.14) - I'm a bit disappointed that the Redskins didn't end up in the top spot. This has been a great rivalry for decades, perhaps one of the most storied rivalries in all of sports, replete with its own lengthy Wikipedia entry. Sadly, like almost everything Redskins owner Dan Snyder has touched in Washington, this once great rivalry has gone down the crapper as well.
1. Philadelphia Eagles (-2.16) - In a universe where the laws of physics demand that scum always rises to the top, the Eagles find themselves at the top of the list of Cowboys haters by a wide margin. No other fan base in the NFL defines itself by its hate of another team as much as Eagles fans do, and their hate of the Cowboys borders on the pathologically obsessive-compulsive.
So there you have it. The Hateful Ten.
One thing you may have noticed is that the New York Giants did not make the top 10 list, and the absence of the four-time Super Bowl winning Giants from this top ten list highlights a telling peculiarity of this ranking: seven of the ten teams (PHI, DET, CAR, CIN, ARI, HOU, SD) have not won a single Super Bowl in their entire franchise history, two teams have scratched their way to one title (NO, SEA), while the Redskins are the only team with multiple (3) Super Bowl titles, a strong indication that the hate for the Cowboys is primarily driven by envy. Envy about their collection of titles, envy about their constant presence in the media, envy about the ubiquity of the Cowboys fans base, and yes, envy about their beautiful, beautiful uniforms.
Contrast that with the ten teams whose fan bases show the strongest liking for the Cowboys: Where the 10 teams that hate the Cowboys the most combined for just five Super Bowls, the ten teams that like the Cowboys the most have all won at least one Super Bowl and have combined for 21 titles.
1. Colts (+1.21), 2 Super Bowls
2. Chiefs (+0.72), 1
3. Patriots (+0.42), 4
4. Jets (+0.35), 1
5. Bears (+0.34), 1
6. Raiders (+0.28), 3
7. Packers (+0.13), 4
8. Broncos (+0.12), 3
9. Buccaneers (+0.12), 1
10. Rams (+0.10), 1
Only one team attracts the kind of hate that lays waste to state borders and geographical boundaries; only one team unites fans from coast to coast in their collective envy; only one team translates the vitriol directed its way into an inescapable media presence completely unconnected to its fortunes on the field: America's Team, the Dallas Cowboys.
Deal with it.