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Who are the most popular NFL franchises in Europe?

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Time2play has used search data from the last year to find out which National Football League (NFL) franchises are the most searched for across 33 European countries. 

Until January 2022, the NFL wasn’t allowed to operate in international markets, so the results across the continent are heavily influenced by last year’s Super Bowl (one of the most globally televised sporting events in the world, drawing in 94.6 million viewers in 2021 alone), which was held in Tampa with the Kansas City Chiefs taking on the home team, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

 

Uncharted territory

Spain, Switzerland, and the Netherlands are among the many countries backing the fan-favorite Bucs in the search for the top spot. However, when we look at the next most-searched-for franchise in each of these countries, we see a clearer picture of fan bases across the continent.

In fact, 30% of Europe searched for the Green Bay Packers, showing their international appeal across the pond, followed by 12% looking up the New England Patriots. With the teams having won four and six Super Bowls, respectively, their regular appearances in the season finale have solidified them as firm favorites around the world. 

people wearing NFL jerseys and holding european country flags

Surprise favorites

The Buffalo Bills managed to rack up the highest search volume in Italy, which is nothing to sneeze at considering the franchise’s revenue sits within the bottom three of the whole league. Their up-and-down season seems to have done a good job of gaining the attention of the Italian audience. The Bills’ popularity in Italy has even led to a Bills Backers Bar, where loyal fans can watch the games. And with seven other countries rooting for the team from Buffalo too, the #BillsMafia is certainly not bound to stay within American shores.

Surprisingly, the least searched-for franchises both originate from the City of Angels; the Los Angeles Chargers and the Los Angeles Rams. Following a 20 year stint in St. Louis, the Rams returned to California and subsequently reignited their rivalry with the Chargers. But limited success by both franchises has led some to say there is only room for one professional football team in LA — and it’s the USC Trojans.

Country Most Popular Team Runner-up
Austria Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Belgium Buffalo Bills Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Bosnia and Herzegovina Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Bulgaria Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Croatia Tampa Bay Buccaneers New England Patriots
Czech Republic Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Denmark Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Estonia Tampa Bay Buccaneers Indianapolis Colts
Finland Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kansas City Chiefs
France Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kansas City Chiefs
Germany Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Greece Buffalo Bills Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Hungary Tampa Bay Buccaneers New England Patriots
Iceland Kansas City Chiefs Green Bay Packers
Ireland Tampa Bay Buccaneers New England Patriots
Italy Buffalo Bills Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Latvia Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cleveland Browns
Lithuania Tampa Bay Buccaneers Dallas Cowboys
Luxembourg Tampa Bay Buccaneers Chicago Bears
Netherlands Tampa Bay Buccaneers Dallas Cowboys
Norway Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Poland Tampa Bay Buccaneers New England Patriots
Portugal Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Romania Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Russia Buffalo Bills Las Vegas Raiders
Serbia Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Slovakia Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Slovenia Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
Spain Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Sweden Tampa Bay Buccaneers Green Bay Packers
Switzerland Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kansas City Chiefs
Ukraine Tampa Bay Buccaneers Buffalo Bills
United Kingdom Miami Dolphins Green Bay Packers

 

Future expansion? 

The NFL announced that from the start of 2022, 18 franchises will be allowed to operate in 26 international markets, spread across in eight different countries. This marks a special time for the sport as it looks to drive existing fan engagement, while also creating entirely new fan bases around the globe.

This new move by the International Committee is a ground-breaking, strategic effort to grow the popularity of American Football franchises globally. This also means we should expect to see the impact of the NFL’s marketing dollars seep into the European continent. But just how long will it be before the teams that have been granted access to markets in Europe take a stronghold of popularity? And how long will it be until there is an NFL franchise with its home in Europe?

Methodology

Time2play analyzed Ahrefs search volume for every NFL franchise across Europe in the past year. The search volume was then used to determine which franchises sit in first and second place in each European country.

Sources

NFL announces international home marketing area teams and markets

There’s a Bills Backers Bar In Italy and It’s Amazing [VIDEO] (wyrk.com)

Super Bowl television ratings – Wikipedia

NFL revenue by team | Statista

Fair use

Feel free to use this data and accompanying assets. Please attribute by linking to this study and citing https://time2play.com/

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