Inked: The NFL teams with the most tattooed fans

Photo of Andrew Wilsher

Andrew Wilsher

NFL· 8 months ago

Show Bio

Editor of Pickswise. Born and raised in jolly old London, England, with an undying love for the NFL, NBA, soccer, and horse racing. A big-time sports bettor who loves futures markets and backing underdogs. Long-suffering New York Jets fan.

Whether they’re your local team or a club you’ve always admired, you’ll have your own way of showing support for the football side you follow – likely through traditional, moderate means. But, what about the fans who so intensely follow their team that they go to extreme lengths to demonstrate appreciation?

Unearthing Instagram hashtag data, we uncover the NFL teams with fans so dedicated that they’ve been inked in club colors. Analyzing the findings, we’ve ranked the sides by the number of relevant posts and explored the reasons behind some of the more interesting revelations.

Which teams are leading the way?

Compiling data from a wide array of relevant Instagram hashtags, each clearly labeling an NFL-inspired tattoo, we’ve discovered that the Philadelphia Eagles, Chicago Bears, Las Vegas Raiders, New England Patriots, and Denver Broncos boast the most ink-friendly fans. With over 4,000 dedicated Instagram posts per club, there’s no shortage of hardcore advocation from supporters. 

Meanwhile, at the other end of the spectrum, there are several clubs laboring behind with less than 100 tattooed fan posts each, with the bottom four including the New York Jets, New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Tennessee Titans – the latter sits bottom of the pile with a measly seven posts across the entire fan base. Yikes! Find the complete list below, and see where your club lands:

What’s inspiring these football tattoos?

So, what prompts an American to decorate their body with their team’s crest? Aside from pure, immeasurable devotion, there are two main reasons that a club might register strong numbers on the tattoo front: recent and historic success and general following. 

Celebrating Super Bowl success

Fans love celebrating success. And what’s more worthy of commemoration than witnessing your club lift the ever-coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy in the Super Bowl? With this in mind, it’s unsurprising that the top third of football-inspired tattoos are attributed to clubs that hold an impressive two-thirds of all NFL Championship titles, including the Patriots, 49ers, Cowboys, and Steelers. 

Similarly, each of the five Super Bowl 49-53 victors (Patriots, Broncos, Eagles) also place within the top five most prominently tattooed club colors. This suggests a contemporary impulsiveness lesser seen in previous generations of winners, with recent winners Philadelphia Eagles’ fans celebrating their maiden success in spectacular style by storming to the top of our tattoo chart.

Despite 2020 being unwittingly anomalous, and tattoo parlors facing partial closure throughout the year, second-time and most recent Championship holders Kansas City Chiefs also sit comfortably within the top ten for inked fans. 

More astonishing, however, is the peculiarly underwhelming popularity of 2012 and four-time champions the New York Giants across the Instagram tattoo community. Collectively, the Giants, along with the Miami Dolphins, Indianapolis Colts, and Baltimore Ravens, account for almost 20 percent of all titles, and yet it’s perennial four-time losers the Buffalo Bills and Minnesota Vikings who claim the vast tattoo advantage.

Is there a correlation with social following?

Since we’ve been dissecting Instagram data, it makes sense to compare the hashtag activity with the follower numbers of the 32 official club accounts. Among the top five followed accounts, we have some of the most decorated clubs in the Patriots, Cowboys, Steelers, and 49ers, with the Seahawks also making the cut. 

Not unexpectedly, when comparing page followers with tattooed fans, there is a prominent correlation: nine of the ten most followed teams also feature within the top 14 in our tattooed fan ranking.

Peculiarly, though, highly decorated side the New York Giants have scored a remarkably low tattoo index score despite boasting four Super Bowl titles and being the eighth-most followed team with 2 million fans. A pitiful sub-100 fan posts showing off inked club colors puts the Big Blue in the bottom ten for tattooed representation. 

Even more astonishing is the follower-to-fan post comparison. Put beside humbled serial losers the Buffalo Bills, you’d expect the Giants to have a field day, but it’s the perpetual second placers who take the victory on this count. Despite meekly claiming the lowest follower count among our index’s top 16 clubs, the Bills register a fan tattoo per 211 followers, compared to the supposed-glittering Giant’s ironically gigantic 27,000 followers for every single club-inspired tattoo. Small victories, eh?

So, with another Super Bowl rolling around, what will next year’s 2021 tattoo index standings look like, and will the Eagles retain their crown? We’ve got the latest Super Bowl Predictions and best free betting picks for the end of the NFL 2020/21 season.

Virginia Bonuses

See All
FanDuel Sportsbook

$150

Bet $5, Win $150 in cash if the Colts or Titans win!

Bet $5 on the Colts or Titans to win

Win $150 in CASH if your team wins!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account to claim

Must be 21+ to play. Full terms available at FanDuel Sportsbook.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$150

Bet $5, Win $150 in cash if the Broncos or Jets win!

Bet $5 on the Broncos or Jets to win

Win $150 in CASH if your team wins!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account to claim

Must be 21+ to play. Full terms available at FanDuel Sportsbook.

DraftKings

$150

Bet $1 on UFC 266, Win $150 INSTANTLY!

Register for a new account at DraftKings Sportsbook and make a deposit.

Place a bet of $1+ on ANY fight on the card for UFC 266.

INSTANTLY win $150! Your initial bet does not need to win!

Bonus paid out as six (6) $25 Free Bets. Free Bets must be used within 7 days of receipt or else they will expire. Must be located in AZ, CO, IA, IL, IN, MI, NJ, PA, TN, VA, WV, or WY to participate. Offer valid for new players ages 21 and up only. Full terms available at DraftKings Sportsbook.

DraftKings

$200

Bet $1 On Any NFL Football Game & Get $150 In Free Bets Instantly!

Register for a new DraftKings Sportsbook account

Bet $1 on any Pro Football game

Instantly get $150 in free bets

BetMGM

$200

Bet $10, Get $200 If Your Team Scores A Touchdown!

Register for a new BetMGM account & deposit $20+

Bet $10 on your team to win Money Line

Win $200 in free bets if your team scores a touchdown

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

PointsBet

$200

Bet $20, Get $200 If Your Team Scores A Touchdown!

Register for a new PointsBet account & deposit $20+

Bet $20 on your team to win Money Line (NFL or NCAAF)

Win $200 in free bets if your team scores a touchdown

FanDuel Sportsbook

$150

Bet $5, Win $150 in cash if the Cowboys or Eagles win!

Bet $5 on the Cowboys or Eagles to win

Win $150 in CASH if your team wins!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account to claim

Must be 21+ to play. Full terms available at FanDuel Sportsbook.

Caesars Sportsbook

$5,000

Get a $5,000 Risk Free Bet + a free NFL Jersey!

Register for a new Caesars Sportsbook account & make a deposit

Place your first bet up to $5,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $5,000 + a free NFL Jersey

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

BetRivers

$250

Get a $250 Deposit Bonus!

Sign up for a new BetRivers account using promo code PICKSWISE

Make a deposit & get it doubled up to $250 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $100

Must be 21+. Play in IA Only. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS OFF

BetMGM

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new BetMGM & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

DraftKings

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Deposit Bonus!

Register for a new DraftKings Sportsbook account & deposit

DraftKings will match 20% of your deposit up to $1,000 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $500

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim 100% Instant Deposit Match up to $100!

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

TVG

$300

Get a $300 Risk-Free Bet with TVG Racebook!

Register for a new TVG account and make a deposit

Place your first single horse win-type bet up to $300

If your horse doesn't win you'll get a refund up to $300

21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.

BetAmerica Racing

$200

$200 Sign Up Bonus!

Fast, reliable and fast payouts - you'll have your money in 72 hours, if not sooner!

Proud history of providing safe, secure, and fun betting to American patrons

BetAmerica is owned by the iconic Churchill Downs Incorporated, home of 150 years of wagering history and the world-famous Kentucky Derby

Players who sign up using ‘BET200’ code will get a $200 sign up bonus. Offer valid for 7 days after registering on BetAmerica Racing product only. 21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.

TwinSpires

$200

Get a $200 Sign Up Bonus with TwinSpires Racebook!

Register for a new Twinspires account using offer code BET200

Make a deposit and start wagering on horse racing

Earn $100 in bonus cash for every $400 wagered!

21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.