CHICAGO - DECEMBER 12: Julius Peppers #90 of the Chicago Bears rushes against Matt Light #72 of the New England Patriots at Soldier Field on December 12 2010 in Chicago Illinois. The Patriots defeated the Bears 36-7. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Let's take a break from the "meat market" poking, prodding, probing and speculating of the NFL Combine for a minute and look at something else. I like the combine, I'll comb through the results and read the analysis, but I just don't see the point of watching wall-to-wall coverage on NFLN. Maybe if I actually had NFLN I could know for sure. Anyway, the results of a poll were released this week over at nfluk.com. The NFL fans of the United Kingdom have spoken and their favorite NFL team is your favorite team too. Unless you're reading this and visiting from another blog.
The Bears finished second in a different poll of nfluk.com users, who chose the Patriots, (apparently UK NFL fans are either irony-impaired or just all US transplants). But at the Bears-Bucs game at Wembley last fall, the Bears gathered 20 "per cent" of the vote.
Hm, I wonder what percentage of people at Soldier Field would say that their favorite team was the Bears?
Anyway, let the pollsters explain it
While the three-time Super Bowl champion Patriots are the number one ranked team according to those registering at nfluk.com, the Bears were named as ‘favourite team’ by 20 per cent of those attending the most recent International Series game at Wembley last October. They beat the Patriots (9 per cent) into second place ahead of the home-team Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7 per cent).
Then they list the results of the previous polls over the years.
Miami Dolphins 26%
Chicago Bears 20%
New York Giants 12%
Miami Dolphins 10%
So the Bears have been crawling up the chart the last couple years. The infancy of the NFL in the UK might be attributed to the fact that there is some fair-weather fan stuff going on; the Packers going from unlisted in '09 to number four in '11 and the Dolphins being very popular in '09, coming off their 11-5 season and dropping to sixth during their latest 6-10 campaign.
The Bears are actually listed ninth among the nfluk.com database, if that means anything. Not to generalize, but I assume a lot of the most popular teams relies on which teams get a lot of air play over there, i.e. the larger-market teams (Chicago, New York, Miami) and the teams that have good records (Packers, Pats).
I know we have some readers from the UK on here, any of them want to chime in? The US fans can share their thoughts too.