Ah, sports. There’s nothing like giving all of your passion and emotion (and money) to something, just to have it likely end in cruel heartbreak. And when it comes to sports, the NFL is king at producing headaches and heartbreak.
But hey, you know what else is king of heartbreak? Country music. And we’ve paired each NFL team with the country song that best describes them.
Arizona Cardinals: “Remind Me” by Brad Paisley feat. Carrie Underwood
The Arizona Cardinals have been around a long time, and yet they seem like the most forgettable
Atlanta Falcons: “The Chokin’ Kind” by Waylon Jennings
28-3. And honestly, plenty of other times. But. Y’all. They blew a 28-3 lead in the second half of the Super Bowl. It’s so bad it’s impressive.
Baltimore Ravens: “(Pardon Me) I’ve Got Someone To Kill” by Johnny Paycheck
Shout out to Ray Lewis for the inspiration to this one. Y’all know why. (He killed somebody and got away with it, probably).
Buffalo Bills: “Something Bad” by Miranda Lambert feat. Carrie Underwood
Because no matter how good it looks like the Bills may be doing, their fans just can’t help feeling like something bad is about to happen.
Carolina Panthers: “Overrated” by Tim McGraw
At least that’s sure how it seems the Cam Newton-led Panthers have been the past few years. Two years ago they absolutely blew it in the Super Bowl, with Newton the prime culprit, and last year they barely bothered to show up at all.
Chicago Bears: “If You’re Going Through Hell (Before The Devil Even Knows)” by Rodney Atkins
For Bears fans, it sure feels like a long trip through hell since Mike Ditka led the team. And 1985 is getting further and further away. But fans of one of America’s most historic franchises just keep on going, hoping to get out eventually. With their worst season in a long time last year, the devil probably already figured out the Bears have been down in the dumps for a while.
Cincinnati Bengals: “Mean” by Taylor Swift
Because the Bengals are generally considered one of the dirtiest NFL teams on the field, known for plenty of cheap shots, late hits and dirty plays. Unlike Taylor Swift, however, they haven’t used their version of “mean” to become incredibly successful.
Cleveland Browns: “He Stopped Loving Her Today” by George Jones
Because the saddest country song ever should be associated with the saddest NFL team ever. And, like the main character in this country classic, many Browns fans will probably, sadly, love their team all the way to the grave.
Dallas Cowboys: “Rich” by Maren Morris
Well, for starters, the Cowboys are the richest sports franchise in the world, worth more than $4 billion. And yet, just like the antagonist in Maren’s song, the Cowboys keep finding ways to disappoint their fans, whether it’s off-field antics or overachieving in the regular season just to underachieve in the playoffs. If Cowboys fans had a dime for every time “what could have been” crossed their minds, well they’d be rich too.
Denver Broncos: “As Good As I Once Was” by Toby Keith
The Broncos are slowly making a name for themselves as the team that brings in aging superstars to take one last run at the big show (like Peyton Manning and DeMarcus Ware). Past their prime? Maybe, but good enough to give it a shot anyway.
Detroit Lions: “Better Class Of Losers” by Randy Travis
By all accounts, the Detroit Lions haven’t achieved diddly squat. I mean, congrats, you won four championships before the Super Bowl even existed (or before 80% of the rest of the league). They’re one of only four teams to never play in a Super Bowl. But for some reason, their fans tend to think they’re better than all these other teams that also suck. Sure, whatever you say, Detroit.
Green Bay Packers: “Mine” by Taylor Swift
Because every citizen of Green Bay feels like they own the team. And for good reason: they technically do. But just like Swift, the Packers fans seem to fall in and out of love with their players every year. One minute Brett Favre is their savior, then it’s Aaron Rogers. And then Aaron Rogers has a bad year and they’re ready to move on again. How like a teenage girl, Green Bay.
Houston Texans: “Strong” by Will Hoge
Full disclosure: we had a cheeky song for the Texans too. But after Hurricane Harvey and watching the team and city rally around each other, no song quite captures that city’s resilience like “Strong.” All-Star player J.J. Watt also just raised $27 million for Harvey victims ($5 million of which just came from the family behind HEB). Respect.
Indianapolis Colts: “A Good Run Of Bad Luck” by Clint Black
Because Andrew Luck looked really good early in his career, but it could have all just been a good run of an otherwise not great player. Which should terrify Colts fans, because they have a lot riding on him and not a whole lot else cooking right now.
Jacksonville Jaguars: “Winner At A Losing Game” by Rascal Flatts
Not sure this one needs too much explanation. The Jags suck. And it seems quarterback Blake Bortles is having a hard time finding that chemistry, just like our boys in Rascal Flatts. But as they sing in this song, “Sometimes two hearts just can’t dance to the same beat.”
Kansas City Chiefs: “Better As A Memory” by Kenny Chesney
Going to a Kansas City Chiefs game is probably somewhat fun. Or just better as a memory, because watching them is one of the most boring experiences ever. This is the team that brought you an entire NFL season without throwing a touchdown pass to a wide receiver. Eesh.
San Diego Chargers: “The Long Goodbye” by Brooks & Dunn
This one is more for their San Diego fans, who tried valiantly to save their team. It seemed like decades of threats to leave San Diego, where they played since 1961. But greedy owners do what greedy owners do.
Los Angeles Rams: “When You Were Mine” by Lady Antebellum
Poor St. Louis. Seriously, they did everything they could to keep the team. But those bright lights of Los Angeles just kept beckoning. And by “bright lights,” we mean bigger television market and new stadium. But just like this sad song, the Rams broke all those peoples’ hearts. Of course, they broke LA’s heart decades ago, too. Man, what an emotional roller coaster.
Las Vegas/Oakland Raiders: “Drunk And Crazy” by Bobby Bare
This franchise has been all around the West Coast, but takes its crazy fanbase no matter where it goes. Heck, they’re even huge down in Mexico. And if you think the fan base will be any less “drunk and crazy” when they get to Sin City, well, you’re probably drunk and crazy.
Miami Dolphins: “Remember When” by Alan Jackson
As in, “Remember when the Miami Dolphins had the perfect team in 1972?” Yes, Miami Dolphins fans, we remember. We also remember how you managed to take one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history and win one measly AFC Championship over 17 years with him. In his first full season.
Minnesota Vikings: “What Might Have Been” by Little Texas
The Minnesota Vikings are the franchise of “what ifs,” because few have gotten as close as they have and came away completely empty handed.
New England Patriots: “Cheater, Cheater” by Joey + Rory
Come on, like this one needs any explaining. But in case you forgot, the Patriots as a franchise have been caught bending the rules or downright cheating a heck of a lot in the past few decades.
New Orleans Saints: “Goodbye Earl” by the Dixie Chicks
From 2009-12, the New Orleans Saints gave bonuses to players who hurt people on the opposing team in a “bounty” style setup. And a lot of people know about it, but just looked the other way. Now, what on Earth could a song about planning to murder somebody have to do with that?
New York Giants: “Family Tradition” by Hank Williams, Jr.
Because Eli Manning, despite being nowhere near the same league of talent as his brother or dad, still has two Super Bowls and is the best thing to happen to the Giants in decades. Much like Hank Williams, Jr., he seems to throw lots of fits and be just a little bit off, but dammit if he didn’t do what he set out to.
New York Jets: “Grandpa (Tell Me ‘Bout The Good Ol’ Days)” by The Judds
Because it’s gonna take a grandpa who was around in the 1960s to tell you about when this franchise had some “good ol’ days.”
Philadelphia Eagles: “If We Make It Through December” by Merle Haggard
The Eagles have a pretty good streak of falling apart in the latter stages of the NFL season, so making it through December is never a guarantee. Plus, this is a brutally sad song, which is generally how Eagles fans feel at the end of the season. Their last championship was 1960.
Pittsburgh Steelers: “This Is How We Roll” by Florida Georgia Line
Because even though it may be really successful, it’s also extremely annoying. Just like all Steelers fans. Seriously, the most annoying fans around. Which might just be a Pittsburgh thing. But at the end of the day, there’s no denying the success they have.
San Francisco 49ers: Any Song by Alabama
Because just like Alabama, they were amazing from like 1980 to 1995, and then completely fell off the face of the Earth except for like, one random year in the 2010s.
Seattle Seahawks: “The Truth” by Jason Aldean
This one is 100% because Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll is allegedly a “truther,” which means he believes the government conspired to commit the Sept. 11 terror attacks. So no matter how good the Seahawks do, or how much fun it is to watch Richard Sherman yap his mouth, or Russel Wilson scramble like a madman, just remember their coach is a massive conspiracy theorist. Yikes.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: “Pirate Flag” by Kenny Chesney
Sure, the fact they actually fly a pirate flag has a lot to do with it, but also they’re kind of an inverted version of Kenny Chesney. While Kenny Chesney has a career full of hits and great songs, he’s also got this somewhat embarrassing little ditty. And then there’s the Bucs, who are pretty much terrible outside of one random Super Bowl in 2002, which pretty much everybody still has a hard time explaining.
Tennessee Titans: “Hurt” by Johnny Cash
Because besides being a country legend, “Hurt” pretty much describes the status of most major Titans players by the end of the season.
Washington Redskins: “Indian Outlaw” by Tim McGraw
Because they’re both terribly racist and should never be mentioned again.