Home field advantage starts in the stands. With the fans.
All the excitement and the energy can sometimes influence the outcome on the field.
That’s why many people believe home field is worth about three points that are built into each betting line.
Consider the betting spreads from this Sunday’s NFL games. DraftKings Sportsbook has the Eagles as 7-point favorites against the Washington Football Team in Philly. And the Steelers are only 1.5-point underdogs against the 9-4 Titans at Heinz Field.
Certainly, the Pennsylvania fans in the stands are worth a few points. But where would they rank against the rest of the league?
Most vocal (and valuable) fan bases in the NFL
Here’s a ranking of the NFL’s most vocal fan bases. And yes, perhaps Pennsylvania’s home crowds have influenced us too.
5. Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs’ Arrowhead Stadium is often considered one of the toughest places to play in the entire league. Kansas City fans are certainly passionate and spirited. According to ESPN’s attendance stats, the Chiefs average above a sellout for each home game this season, with their home attendance listed at 100.4% on the season.
That means fans are consistently filling up every seat in the stadium and adding to their numbers with a standing-room-only crowd too. Just so they can cheer on their Chiefs – and maybe torment the visiting team too.
Super Bowl odds (all pricing provided by DraftKings Sportsbook): +500
4. Green Bay Packers
Go Pack, Go!
If there was ever any doubt about the dedication of Packers fans, just take a glimpse at the weather. Green Bay fans often brave some brutal late-season temperatures to root for their team, which has the distinction of being in the smallest city among all NFL franchises.
However, you would never know that based on the attendance figures. ESPN’s stats have Green Bay with the second-highest average home attendance this season, drawing approximately 78,032 fans per game. Clearly, whatever Green Bay may lack in market size, the Packers fans make up for in fervor.
Super Bowl odds: +650
3. Dallas Cowboys
How bout them Cowboys?!
It doesn’t matter what state you live in, you can’t make it very far without running into a Dallas Cowboys fan. Dallas has been one of the NFL’s most iconic franchises since the 1970s and has held onto that status even though the on-field results are often mixed.
Dallas fans are both loud and loyal. According to an ESPN attendance stat, the Cowboys lead the league this year in average attendance drawing 93,404 fans on average per home game. Their attendance rate is also listed at an impressive 93.4%.
Super Bowl odds: +1200
2. Pittsburgh Steelers
The mere mention of Steelers fans spawns images of Terrible Towels twirling in a stadium. Thanks to the team’s storied success in the 1970s, when football was making some of its early forays into television, Pittsburgh’s fan base is truly nationwide.
In fact, the team’s Week 11 game in Los Angeles felt at times like a home game, with a healthy number of Steelers fans waving towels inside SoFi Stadium. And you can certainly expect a raucous crowd inside Heinz Field on Sunday when the Steelers host the Titans at 1 p.m.
Super Bowl odds: +20000
1. Philadelphia Eagles
Any legitimate ranking of the NFL’s most vocal fans has to put the Eagles near the top, right? After all, this is the fan base that became famous for booing Santa Claus. And if that wasn’t enough, fans threw snowballs at him too. Eagles fans are unmistakably loud – and perhaps occasionally hostile too. But there’s no denying their passion.
Philadelphia’s average attendance for its home games at Lincoln Financial Field is at 99.9% for the season. And with the team on the edge of the NFL playoff race, there will be some spirited fans in the stadium when the Eagles play Washington at 1 p.m. on Sunday. The Washington Football Team will certainly hear from them too and you can bet the line reflects a strong home field advantage.
Super Bowl odds: +10000
Lead image credit: AP Photo/Justin Berl