For every great fan base in the NFL, there are just as many fan bases who become less and less enthralled with passion for their team after enduring countless disappointments. I got the inspiration for writing this article after reading Bryn Swartz's article titled "The 10 Most Passionate Fan Bases in The NFL".
My list will include the 10 least passionate fan bases in the NFL. Now, I am not intending to insult fans of any fan base and I'm certain people who admire each team I will list could make a valid argument for why fans are passionate for that specific team.
But, if your going to list the top 10 most passionate, there has to be a list of fan bases who would rank on average to be the least passionate.
Here they are...
10. Jacksonville Jaguars
Sometimes it might prove difficult to become passionate for a team that hasn't been around for any longer than 15 years. The Jaguars do not have much of a history and that plays a vital factor in their fan base.
Sure, there are some people out there who love their Jacksonville Jaguars but there are not enough of them to crack the upper echelon of the NFL's elite fan bases.
9. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons are another team that lacks the rich history that can often lead to a solid fan base. Certainly stricken with the grief known as Michael Vick, the Falcons fans have embraced a new beginning.
This past season was a good sign of things to come but until we see more consistency, their fan base has to remain one of the least active in the league.
8. Carolina Panthers
Perhaps North Carolina really is basketball country. It's kind of hard to become one of the better fan bases when college basketball surpasses the popularity of your NFL team.
Maybe it is the numerous seasons of the Panthers not living up to their lofty expectations that prevents the Panther nation from becoming a more passionate force.
7. New York Jets
They play at Giants Stadium, that's strike one. I'm not sure if its the name of the stadium or the 40-year championship drought that keeps Jets fans from reaching their potential.
When was the last time a Jets home game was a frightful place to visit? Perhaps when the Stadium situation gets resolved we can see a resurgence of passionate Jets fans. I know there a bunch out there but their team needs to do more for them or else they can expect more of the same, which isn't much.
6. San Francisco 49ers
The glory days have long since passed them. No longer are the 49ers anything even closely resembling a dynasty. It's good to live in the glory days of old but until the 49ers can manage to remind their fans where they came from, they shouldn't expect the hardcore support they once had.
5. Seattle Seahawks
They have one of the finest stadiums in pro football but that's about where the passion for the Seahawks ends. Their two greatest assets are now gone (Mike Holmgren & Shaun Alexander) and there is not much of a history to relive. What does it take to spark interest in Seattle?
4. St. Louis Rams
Remember the Greatest Show On Turf? The fans don't or at least it certainly doesn't seem like it. The strong passion we saw in the city of St. Louis left when the show ended.
Since then, Rams fans have been forced to endure some difficult times which is a shame considering some of the talent they have. This is a fan base that could easily be resurrected if the teams gets off on the right foot.
3. Cincinnati Bengals
Perhaps the many years of being referred to as Bungals got under their skin. The Bengals have long been one of the worst teams in the NFL and this past season didn't do them any favors. It's hard to maintain interest when Ocho Cinco isn't celebrating touchdown catches.
2. Houston Texans
Those poor Texans fans have nothing much to cheer for. Being the NFL's newest franchise, they have only had a few years of Texans history to grow on the problem is, those years have not been successful. Without any history to relish in and any current success to embrace, what does this city have besides a beautiful stadium?
1. Detroit Lions
The brown paper bags tell the entire story. The lifetime of disappointments finally culminated in an 0-16 season this year. The fantastic Ford Field was often half empty with a fan base who's been left with literally nothing to cheer for.
Barry Sanders' retirement was perhaps the funeral for Lions fans with things looking even worse every days since.
It is going to take a whole heck of a lot to rejuvenate this fan base. On the plus side, after seeing how this off-season could go, the fans might finally have something to cheer for.