The New England Patriots have taken the “honor” of being the most hated team in the NFL away from the Dallas Cowboys ever since “Deflategate,” Public Policy Polling said Monday.
According to a football poll conducted last week by the firm, 21 percent of fans say the Patriots are their least favorite team, with 19 percent choosing the Cowboys.
Those teams were followed by the Chicago Bears (12 percent) and Green Bay Packers (8 percent).
The poll was taken of 378 NFL fans representative of the U.S. population, ESPN.com said of the PPP research.
Favorite team in the NFL honors were bunched up, PPP found, with the Cowboys and Packers both at 14 percent and the Patriots and Steelers at 11 percent.
The poll also found that 53 percent are rooting for the Atlanta Falcons to win Sunday’s Super Bowl against 27 percent for the Patriots.
As far as who will win on Sunday, however, the Patrots got the nod 52-36 percent in the poll.
Fans were also divided on Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Brady is the most popular quarterback at 22 percent and least popular at 24 percent.
Cowboys rookie quarterback Dak Prescott impressively finished fourth in “favorite” quarterback at 10 percent, behind Brady, the Packers’ Aaron Rodgers at 16 percent and the New York Giants’ Eli Manning at 11 percent.
The polling firm said it saw the bandwagon effect for the Cowboys. Their percentage of fans went from 10 percent last year to 14 percent this year after a 13-3 season.
Only 30 percent of fans, however, consider the Cowboys “America’s Team.” Saying they aren’t: 60 percent.