Which NFL teams are winning the Facebook battle?

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As National Football League teams prepare for the 2013 season, it’s time to examine how they look — on Facebook. Teams with historically large fanbases (Dallas Cowboys, Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers) are also among the most popular on Facebook, according to PageData.

These teams also do well in the people talking about this (PTAT) metric, as the Cowboys finish first in both regards.

Scan the table below from PageData and find out how popular your favorite football team is on the social network.

Table sorted by total likes:

NameLikesΔ TodayΔ This WeekPTATΔ TodayΔ This Week
Dallas Cowboys5,464,119+638+6,524332,847-108,822-313,754
The Pittsburgh Steelers4,918,683+478+1,659219,895-28,480-17,675
New England Patriots4,076,142+493+2,380201,975-22,752-3,045
Green Bay Packers3,510,982+540+2,07287,387-44,612-102,165
New Orleans Saints2,966,591+304+2,653142,550-37,064-60,858
Chicago Bears2,731,866+313+2,91988,470+3,590+10,381
New York Giants2,714,022+834+1,953100,592-4,022+29,568
Philadelphia Eagles2,065,211+158+1,60341,402-10,647-22,673
The Oakland Raiders1,944,756+331+11,872197,634-44,610-9,373
San Francisco 49ers1,917,240+693+5,208112,806+19,257-357
Indianapolis Colts1,687,016+314+79145,436-3,869+11,382
Denver Broncos1,551,799+735+3,04558,473-13,060-56,882
New York Jets1,499,859+17+2118,4410-4,872
Baltimore Ravens1,497,111+304+2,26893,056-10,563-9,499
Minnesota Vikings1,429,007+71+43463,438-16,699-41,741
Miami Dolphins1,344,077+330+1,77836,564-13,023-28,035
San Diego Chargers1,224,636+84+54627,787-864-16,583
Washington Redskins1,128,458+269+1,47752,075-1,304-16,093
Atlanta Falcons1,057,064+332+2,29660,276-2,216+2,212
Seattle Seahawks895,362+1,199+4,73953,933-9,841-51,310
Houston Texans892,320+730+4,47380,081-33,825-11,893
Detroit Lions874,109+308+1,70135,555-21,443-28,014
The Kansas City Chiefs675,846+126+1,26722,163+3,509+203
Cincinnati Bengals661,681+212+1,25315,915-1,349-5,495
The Official Cleveland Browns644,529+145+1,65936,702-3,678-10,171
Carolina Panthers588,482+203+1,99548,077-15,297-6,230
Arizona Cardinals569,075+317+2,85633,169-8,522-9,058
Tampa Bay Buccaneers561,383+116+1,15519,368-924-33,299
Tennessee Titans536,356+106+55316,131-670-18,158
Buffalo Bills440,212+108+1,06453,183+6,437+17,759
St. Louis Rams421,055+101+63713,772+2,229-5,369
Jacksonville Jaguars316,499+111+64414,908-5,939-1,680

But how does on-the-field performance translate into Facebook popularity? Let’s compare likes with 2012 win percentage for the top 8 teams.

  • Denver Broncos (.813): 1,551,799 likes
  • Atlanta Falcons (.813): 1,057,064
  • New England Patriots (.750): 4,076,142
  • Houston Texans (.750): 892,320
  • San Francisco 49ers (.719): 1,917,240
  • Green Bay Packers (.688): 3,510,982
  • Seattle Seahawks (.688): 895,362
  • Indianapolis Colts (.688): 1,687,016

Even though the Houston Texans and Seattle Seahawks were quite successful on the field, their Facebook fanbases are small compared to competitive teams like the New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers.

Some other interesting Facebook facts about NFL teams:

  • 11 percent of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Facebook fans come from Mexico. The Steelers (who play 1,660 miles from the closest Mexican border) have a higher concentration of fans from Mexico than the San Diego Chargers (7 percent), who are just 20 miles away from the Mexican border.
  • On Oct. 27, the San Francisco 49ers and Jacksonville Jaguars will play a game in London. For both teams, the U.K. represents just 1 percent of the total fanbase, showing that Facebook users in this area strongly prefer their own brand of football.
  • Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu is Facebook’s most popular NFL player (2.3 million likes), followed by Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick (2.2 million) and Lions running back Reggie Bush (2.1 million).
  • The New York Giants are the fastest-growing in weekly PTAT, while the Oakland Raiders have gained the most fans over the past week.
  • The NFL’s official Facebook page ranks third among major American sports leagues in terms of total likes, trailing the National Basketball Association and Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.