The Dallas Cowboys are once again America’s most hated team according to the annual Public Policy Polling’s poll of attitudes towards NFL teams and players.
In a survey of registered voters, 18% of respondents chose the Cowboys as their least favourite NFL team. While that still leads all teams, that is actually down from 23% a year ago, thanks in large part to a newfound hatred of the New England Patriots.
The Patriots, who were the third-most hated team last year at 9%, jumped to No. 2 at 13% this year, and they can thank “Deflategate” for at least some of the change in perception.
Of those polled, 41% think the Patriots cheated in the AFC Championship game, after the NFL discovered that 11 of the 12 balls used by the Patriots had an air pressure level below the allowed limit. Only 27% believe the Patriots did not cheat while 32% are not sure.
Meanwhile, the Green Bay Packers have replaced the Denver Broncos as America’s most loved teams, with 15% calling them their favourite team. In an example of just how polarising the Cowboys (13%) are, they are also the second-most liked team for the second year in a row.
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