The Buffalo Bills’ fanbase – better known as #BillsMafia – is one of, if not the best fanbases in the NFL. They support their team in such unique ways and, while every fanbase has their traditions, there’s something about #BillsMafia that takes the meaning of ‘tradition’ and ‘support’ to a whole new level.
That uniqueness was on full display during the team’s Week 15 matchup against the Miami Dolphins. When the team scored an early touchdown to take a 7-3 lead, fans started throwing snowballs into the endzone as part of a TD celebration. They received some criticism for it, but they were having fun.
In the final minutes of the game, with the score tied 29-29, the Bills started to drive down the field in hopes of making a game-winning field goal. During the two-minute warning, with snowfall at its peak, the PA system played ‘Let It Snow’ and the entire stadium started singing along – they ended up winning.
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How Does #BillsMafia Rank Among the Best Fanbases in the NFL?
There’s no fanbase quite like #BillsMafia – that’s a given. They’re easy to hate because they find joy in any situation, win or lose. At the same time, they can be just as easy to love because they come together in times of need and have, on several occasions, shown the world the power behind standing in unity.
And they often show it in the form of donations:
- Fans donated more than $450,000 to Andy Dalton’s charity after the Bengals helped the Bills end their 17-year playoff drought.
- Fans donated more than $1 million to a children’s hospital in honor of Josh Allen’s grandmother when she died.
- Fans donated more than $9 million to Damar Hamlin’s charity when he suffered cardiac arrest in the middle of a game.
- Fans donated more than $120,000 when Tre’Davious White tore his ACL during a Thanksgiving Day game.
- Fans donated more than $450,000 to Lamar Jackson’s charity after he went down with an injury during a playoff game – which the Bills won.
- Fans donated nearly $200,000 to Dawson Knox’s charity after learning his brother passed away.
- Fans also have fun with it, donating more than $65,000 to the Visually Impaired Advancement after refs missed an easy pass interference call, which cost the Bills a win.
BillsMafia is one big family that has been through a lot of dark times together, so you can expect them to act out a little when things go right. And, while things have been going right the past few seasons, they know when it’s time to stop the party and unify. That’s why they’re one of the best fanbases in the NFL.
With that said, let’s take a look at the league’s best fanbases, as it stands right now.
20. Atlanta Falcons
The Atlanta Falcons have gone through some tough years since their epic letdown against the Patriots in Super Bowl LI and they might’ve ranked 30th in the NFL in home game attendance percentage (92.8%), but the fanbase is still very much behind their favorite team – despite five consecutive losing seasons.
In terms of social media, the Atlanta Falcons have 2.4 million followers on Twitter, 1.2 million followers on Instagram, and 1.9 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of 5.5 million users on social media. With back-to-back 7-10-0 seasons, you have to think this team is just a quarterback away from contention.
19. Cleveland Browns
The Cleveland Browns have long been the laughing stock of the NFL and things got even worse when they signed Deshaun Watson to that massive contract, but the fanbase isn’t going anywhere and actually has some things to be happy about – like ranking No. 10 in the NFL in home game attendance (100.0%).
On social media, the Browns boast 1.5 million followers on Twitter, 1.3 million followers on Instagram, and 1.3 million likes on Facebook – totaling 4.1 million users on social media. They’ve missed the playoffs two years in a row and have only been once in the past 20 seasons, but they should be back very soon.
18. Minnesota Vikings
The Minnesota Vikings are notorious for giving their fans hope all regular season long, just to have them flop when the playoffs come. It’s exactly what happened this season when they made the playoffs for the first time in three years after a 13-4-0 record, just to lose to the Giants 24-31 in the Wild Card Round.
The good news is the team ranked No. 8 in home game attendance in 2022 at 100.3% – their stadium was filled beyond capacity regularly. They also boast 1.5 million followers on Twitter, 1.2 million followers on Instagram, and 2.0 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of 4.7 million users on social media.
17. Los Angeles Chargers
The Los Angeles Chargers changed cities ahead of the 2017 season, moving from San Diego to Los Angeles. While they definitely lost a lot of fans in the process, they also gained a lot of fans and are among the middle of the pack (No. 18) in the NFL in home game attendance percentage (97.8%).
As far as social media is concerned, the Chargers have 1.0 million followers on Twitter, 1.0 million followers on Instagram, and 1.4 million likes on Facebook. Their fanbase is growing stronger every year and they have Justin Herbert to thank for that – how can you hate the guy. He’s definitely a keeper.
16. Baltimore Ravens
The Baltimore Ravens have consistently been a playoff team since entering the league in 1996 – they’ve made the playoffs in 14 of their 27 seasons and have made it in four of the past five seasons. While fans don’t have a lot to complain about, they certainly might if the front office doesn’t extend Lamar Jackson.
The Ravens ranked No. 14 in home game attendance percentage (99.8%) – their fans showed up more often than not. The team boasts 1.8 million followers on Twitter, 1.6 million followers on Instagram, and 2.2 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of 5.6 million users on all major social media platforms.
15. San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers had the highest home game attendance percentage in the NFL this past season at a whopping 104.6%. They had a total of 644,661 fans attend their nine home games and averaged more than 71,000 fans per home game. It’s no secret that 49ers’ fans show out when their team’s in town.
Their fans also show out on social media with the 49ers boasting 2.4 million followers on Twitter, 2.8 million followers on Instagram, and 3.9 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of more than 9.1 million users on social media. They receive support both on and off the field, which is all they can ask for.
14. Carolina Panthers
The Carolina Panthers have struggled mightily since Cam Newton left and have missed the playoffs five years in a row and six out of the last seven seasons. They also ranked just 22nd in the league in home game attendance (96.7%) and had 642,167 total fans attend home games in 2022 – 71,351 per game.
The team boasts 3.0 million followers on Twitter, 1.8 million followers on Instagram, and 2.1 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of over 6.9 million users on social media. The team might be several years away from contention – if they can get a quarterback – but they’ll have the support either way.
13. Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos were the laughing stock of the NFL this past season – something no one had on their 2022 bingo card. They were expected to take a giant leap forward with new QB Russell Wilson, but ended up taking a huge step backward. And while fans are noticeably angry, they aren’t going anywhere.
The Broncos ranked No. 13 in the NFL in home game attendance (99.8%) and had 607,845 fans show up to their 8 home games – an average of 75,980. They also boast 2.7 million followers on Twitter, 1.3 million followers on Instagram, and 3.9 million likes on Facebook – totaling 7.9 million social media followers.
12. Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders’ fanbase took a gigantic hit when they moved from Oakland to Sin City, but they’re still some of the most intense fans in the league. That’s because their die-hard fans – the real fans – never left and they, honestly, don’t mind making the trip every weekend (when possible, of course).
With that said, the Raiders ranked 26th in the NFL in home game attendance (95.5%) and had 496,363 fans show up to their eight home games. They boast 1.9 million followers on Twitter, 2.1 million followers on Instagram, and 3.2 million likes on Facebook – totaling 7.2 million followers on social media.
11. New Orleans Saints
The New Orleans Saints have come a long way since the 1980s, when fans were putting brown paper bags over their heads – out of pure embarrassment for the team. While fans were embarrassed, they weathered out the storm and finally got to see some quality football over the past two decades.
The team ranked just 24th in the NFL in home game attendance (96.1%), which is expected for a team that hasn’t made the playoffs in two years. They also boast 1.7 million followers on Twitter, 1.9 million followers on Instagram, and 3.9 million likes on Facebook – totaling more than 7.5 million followers.
10. New York Giants
The New York Giants have always had a loyal fanbase, but the team has been very hard to follow over the past decade – entering the 2022 season, they missed the playoffs in 9 of the previous 10 years. Of course, fans had a lot to cheer for this year as they not only made the playoffs, but secured a playoff win.
The only major knock against this team is their 92.7% home game attendance percentage – they had 688,266 fans show up to their nine home games. They boast 2.0 million followers on Twitter, 2.6 million followers on Instagram, and 3.6 million likes on Facebook – totaling 8.2 million followers on social media.
9. Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears are one of the most recognizable teams in all of football and have some of the most loyal fans in the league. They don’t care how cold it is, how much snow is falling, or how bad their team is playing – fans are going to show up. Don’t worry, it appears they might finally have their QB of the future.
The team ranked 19th in home game attendance (97.3%) with 538,410 fans showing up to their eight home games – not bad, considering their harsh weather. They boast 2.0 million followers on Twitter, 1.5 million followers on Instagram, and 3.7 million likes on Facebook – totaling 7.2 million followers.
8. New England Patriots
New England Patriots’ fans are some of the most spoiled fans in all of sports and, while it’s easy to call them ‘fair weather fans,’ they’re much more than that. In fact, they’re as loyal as any other fanbase and take great pride in their team – even though Tom Brady isn’t around to win them a title every year.
The Patriots ranked No. 11 in the league in home game attendance last year (100.0%), totaling 527,024 fans at their eight home games. The team boasts 4.7 million followers on Twitter, 4.8 million followers on Instagram, and 6.6 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of over 16.1 million users on social media.
7. Seattle Seahawks
The Seattle Seahawks easily have one of the loudest fanbases in the league and it makes it difficult for opposing teams to play in their stadium – which is exactly what you want from your fans. And even with the team trading away their franchise quarterback (Russell Wilson), the fans had plenty to cheer for.
The Seahawks ranked No. 9 in the NFL in home game attendance in 2022 – totaling 619,491 fans at their nine home games this year. They boast 2.5 million followers on Twitter, 3.1 million followers on Instagram, and 3.7 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of more than 9.3 million users on social media.
6. Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys have had a worthy team for several seasons now, but always seem to come up short in the playoffs – they haven’t appeared in the NFC Championship or Super Bowl since winning it all in 1995. During that span, the team is just 5-12 in the playoffs and have gone through six head coaches.
And while they ranked just 29th in home game attendance (93.5%), a big reason why is because they have the third-largest stadium in the NFL. They boast an incredible 4.3 million followers on Twitter, 4.4 million followers on Instagram, and 8.3 million likes on Facebook – totaling over 17.0 million followers.
5. Kansas City Chiefs
Patriots’ fans used to be the most spoiled team in the NFL, but that award goes to the Kansas City Chiefs’ fanbase – they can expect to see their team in Super Bowl contention for the next 10+ years, if not more. And while the Seahawks used to have the loudest stadium, that award goes to the Chiefs, as well.
Kansas City ranked 7th in the NFL in home game attendance (100.8%) with 587,997 fans showing up to their eight home games. The team boasts 2.2 million followers on Twitter, 2.4 million followers on Instagram, and 1.9 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of over 6.5 million users on social media.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers
The PIttsburgh Steelers have what we call ‘fan goals’ – the type of fans most teams wish they had. While the team has missed the playoffs in three of the past five seasons, they’re never that far off from a playoff berth and always find a way to keep themselves in it – a good recipe for keeping fans happy and satisfied.
The Steelers ranked 20th in home game attendance (96.9%) with 530,243 fans showing up to their eight home games – an average of 66,280 per game. They boast 3.7 million followers on Twitter, 3.4 million followers on Instagram, and 5.9 million followers on Facebook – totaling a reach of 13.0 million followers.
3. Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles are as passionate as any other fanbase and it usually pays off as the team finds a way to stay in contention year-in and year-out. They most recently won the Super Bowl in 2018 and have a chance at winning it again after a dream season that ended with a 14-3 record – best in the NFC.
The Eagles ranked 12th in home game attendance (100.0%) with 628,828 fans showing up to their nine home games – an average of 69,869 fans per game. They boast 3.7 million followers on Twitter, 2.5 million followers on Instagram, and 3.1 million likes on Facebook – totaling 9.3 million followers.
2. Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers’ fanbase doesn’t care what the weather looks like – they will watch their team in the freezing cold if they have to. They’re home to some of the worst weather conditions in the league, but still manage to fill 96.5% of their stadium with 685,623 fans in nine home games during the 2022 season.
And while the Packers missed the playoffs for just the third time since 2009, fans aren’t giving up on their team – though they’re preparing for life without Aaron Rodgers in a few years. The team boasts 2.5 million followers on Twitter, 2.5 million followers on Instagram, and 5.1 million likes on Facebook.
1. Buffalo Bills
As we mentioned in the intro, the Buffalo Bills are the most passionate, loyal, and supportive fanbase in the NFL. They come together like no other team in the league and have stayed by their team’s side despite years of disappointment – they missed the playoffs 17 years in a row between 2000 and 2016.
The Bills ranked just 25th in the league in home game attendance (95.5%) with 547,450 showing up to their eight home games. They boast 1.6 million followers on Twitter, 1.5 million followers on Instagram, and 1.0 million likes on Facebook – totaling a reach of just 4.0 million users on all social media platforms.
Who Are the Best Fanbases in All of Sports?
It sounds cliche, but a professional sports team is nothing without its fans – literally and figuratively. Without a loyal and active fan base, franchises won’t have the attendance and sales to support the team financially. Not only that, but fans are what make it all worth it for the players that make up that team.
The Buffalo Bills clearly have one of the best fanbases – not just in football, but in all of sports. Other teams, not listed above, with loyal fanbases include the Carolina Hurricanes, Los Angeles Lakers, St. Louis Cardinals, Golden State Warriors, Boston Red Sox, New York Knicks, and Vegas Golden Knights.
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Of course, this is always a very sensitive and opinionated subject. It doesn’t matter who your favorite team is or what city the team represents, everyone thinks their fanbase is the best fanbase. At the end of the day, the best fanbases in the world are willing to stick by their team no matter what – through thick and thin.
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