News & Politics

STUDY: Commanders Fans Are NFL’s Least Optimistic

Researchers looked for signs of hope among football fans. They didn't find much in Washington.

Image courtesy the Washington Commanders.

Researchers searched 30 recent days of Twitter activity for tweets that expressed hope—and Washington Commanders fans came in dead last, according to data compiled by the online gambling platform BetOnline.AG. The researchers looked for phrases that included team names as well as words like “will win the division” or “will make the playoffs” as well as phrases like “this is our year,” a company spokesperson says. Fewer than one percent of tweets they examined displayed any such sentiment about the local football team, below even Cleveland Browns fans:

The Commanders have a new name, a new quarterback, and vague plans for a new stadium. It will be the smallest in the NFL if built, which is appropriate for a team that had the league’s second-lowest attendance during the last season. Attendance at the team’s training camp has so far appeared to reflect fan malaise, despite free tickets:

The team’s first preseason game against the Carolina Panthers will take place at FedEx Field this coming Saturday, and the regular season will begin with a home game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on September 11.

Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute, TBD.com, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.