Likability Index: Ranking NFL teams by the appeal of their players
Welcome to theScore's Likability Index, wherein we rank teams in several completely subjective categories to determine the NFL's most likable team.
Factors assessed in ranking likability of players include charisma, community engagement, off-field transgressions, and style of play.
32. Washington Redskins
▼ Robert Griffin III is quickly becoming one of the most unlikable players in the game. A quarterback should never throw his teammates under the bus.
▼ The media circus surrounding Griffin is quickly getting old.
▼ DeSean Jackson often seems more interested in heading to the club than dominating on the field.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars
▲ Denard Robinson as a running back is electrifying, and "Shoelace" has proven to be as entertaining in the NFL as he was during his college career playing quarterback.
▼ Blake Bortles says he's gunning for a $100-million contract. You've been in the NFL for one (pretty poor) season, Blake. Take it easy.
▼ Although they're a promising, up-and-coming team, the Jaguars' roster is still largely anonymous.
30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
▲ Jameis Winston was analyzing defensive schemes at 12 years old. How cool is that?
▼ Most fans seem willing to give Winston the benefit of the doubt, but it's hard to overlook some of the allegations levied against him in college once you dig into the details.
▼ Outside of Winston, Mike Evans, Lavonte David, and Gerald McCoy, the Buccaneers are largely unrecognizable.
29. Tennessee Titans
▲ Marcus Mariota was recently ranked as the NFL’s most likable player by Celebrity DBI, an independent index that quantifies and qualifies consumer perceptions of celebrities.
▼ However, outside of Mariota the team remains pretty much unknown nationally. Even excellent defensive lineman Jurrell Casey fails to get recognition.
▼ Wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham was dismissed from Missouri for allegedly pushing a woman down the stairs.
28. Cleveland Browns
▲ Johnny Football will always be fun, so at least there's that. On a more serious note, Manziel deserves credit for entering rehab voluntarily to sort out whatever undisclosed issues were bothering him.
▼ When the two best players on your offense are linemen, there's a pretty good chance you're boring to watch.
▼ Donte Whitner changed his Twitter bio to @DonteHitner, picked a fight with ex-Buffalo Bill Darryl Talley's daughter and wife, and is a general nuisance.
▼Star wide receiver Josh Gordon's inability to stay on the field due to substance abuse-related issues is incredibly frustrating.
27. Chicago Bears
▲ Guard Kyle Long has one of the NFL's most entertaining Twitter accounts.
▼ Quarterback Jay Cutler's "I don't care" attitude is amusing at times, but ultimately grating.
▼ The former Monsters of the Midway lack any real identity on defense.
26. St. Louis Rams
▲ How much fun was it to watch Aaron Donald dominate opposing offensive linemen as a rookie? The reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year is part of one of the league's most terrifying units.
▲ Much like his brother, defensive end Chris Long runs one of the NFL's best Twitter feeds.
▼ Todd Gurley, a running back who's yet to play an NFL down, is the most exciting player on the Rams' offense.
▼ The team is short on entertaining personalities outside of Long, in part due to a very forgettable quarterback/wide receiver/secondary group.
25. San Francisco 49ers
▲ The 49ers' depth (or lack thereof) allowed them to take chances on several prospects who fell in the draft due to injury concerns. Those players should make for some of the best stories to follow.
▲ Few players are as entertaining on Twitter as Darnell Dockett. His live tweeting of jury duty stands out as a high point.
▼ Beside Colin Kaepernick, who is actually still on the 49ers? It feels like half the team retired.
▼ Kaepernick did himself no favors over the summer, comparing himself to a flood in Houston that killed at least 10 people.
T-22. Miami Dolphins
▲ All-Pro defensive end Cameron Wake's rise to stardom is one of the NFL's best stories. Wake excelled in the CFL before getting a shot in the NFL.
▼ There's no way around it: Defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh is a dirty player.
▼ The Jonathan Martin bullying scandal in 2012 still leaves a sour taste in people's mouths, with offensive lineman Mike Pouncey one of the key perpetrators.
T-22. Cincinnati Bengals
▲ When he's healthy, A.J. Green is one of the league's most dynamic players. It's a true joy to watch his nearly unmatched physical gifts.
▼ Andy Dalton is the kind of unbelievably average quarterback you really never know how to feel about. Dalton's lack of any discernible charisma also hurts him in these rankings.
▼ It appears linebacker Vontaze Burfict is trying to injure all of his opponents. Stop it!
T-22. Atlanta Falcons
▲ Star wide receiver Julio Jones is one of a handful of players so physically dominant he can carry his team to wins almost singlehandedly. He's as exciting as it gets.
▼ Can someone tell quarterback Matt Ryan he's allowed to have a personality?
▼ The average fan would be hard-pressed to name three defensive starters on the Falcons.
21. Minnesota Vikings
▲ You can't not cheer for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to dominate after the ridiculous pre-draft process that saw his stock drop. He's become an underdog story of sorts despite being a first-round selection in 2014.
▼ It may come as a surprise to some, but more Vikings players have been arrested since 2000 than any other NFL team.
▼ Running back Adrian Peterson sounds sincere when he speaks about loving his son and wanting to improve as a father, but it's impossible to forget that he beat a four-year-old child until he bled.
20. Oakland Raiders
▲ Quarterback Derek Carr, wide receiver Amari Cooper, and linebacker Khalil Mack finally give this team some exciting young players that are easy to root for.
▲ Charles Woodson commands the utmost respect for his phenomenal career. The 1997 Heisman Trophy winner is still among the NFL's best safeties at age 38.
▼ The roster remains relatively nameless outside of the players mentioned.
19. Buffalo Bills
▲ Buffalo may boast the fastest roster in the league, with wide receivers Sammy Watkins and Percy Harvin, and running back LeSean McCoy in tow. Who doesn't like a team with this kind of speed?
▲ Defensive end Mario Williams's signing in 2012 helped kill the perception that Buffalo is an unwanted destination for marquee players.
▼ The accusations of racism levied by McCoy at Eagles head coach Chip Kelly are by all appearances baseless.
▼ Did guard Richie Incognito really deserve another chance after the Jonathan Martin bullying scandal?
18. Dallas Cowboys
▲ Running the ball by overpowering the opponent is a lost art in today's game, but the Cowboys are as good as it gets in that regard.
▲ Watching wide receiver Dez Bryant drag defensive backs into the end zone gets the blood flowing.
▼ The domestic violence allegations levied against defensive end Greg Hardy are sickening.
▼ Whether it's warranted or not, it's difficult for some people to like quarterback Tony Romo. His propensity to shrink in nationally televised games doesn't help his reputation.
17. Kansas City Chiefs
▲ The recovery of running back Jamaal Charles from an ACL tear was nothing short of spectacular.
▲ Tight end Travis Kelce mirrors all the best traits that Rob Gronkowski possesses.
▼ Quarterback Alex Smith is efficient, but rarely throws downfield. It's no fun to watch his style of play.
T-14. Detroit Lions
▲ We've yet to confirm if wide receiver Calvin Johnson is indeed a human being. Megatron sports the best - and most accurate - nickname in the NFL.
▲ Wide receiver Golden Tate is one of the most candid quotes in the league.
▼ Quarterback Matthew Stafford seems kind of like your annoying little brother.
T-14. San Diego Chargers
▲ Antonio Gates is a consummate professional and a fan favorite. The veteran tight end continuously plays through injuries and finds a way to produce at a high level.
▲ The bolo ties worn by quarterback Philip Rivers are a hit. Who knew what bolo ties were before his press conferences?
▼ Rivers also whines and complains as much as any quarterback.
T-14. Philadelphia Eagles
▲ It's a unique kind of fun watching Eagles players out-tempo their opponents on a regular basis.
▲ Tim Tebow had the 15th best-selling jersey in May despite the strong chance he won’t make the Eagles' final roster. That's a testament to just how beloved he is.
▼ There's no evidence that head coach Chip Kelly is racist (despite what LeSean McCoy says), but Riley Cooper was caught on tape shouting a racial slur. Cooper is still a prominent member of the Eagles' roster, by the way.
T-12. Baltimore Ravens
▲ Wide receiver Steve Smith is a quote machine and a national treasure. Memorably, he warned the Panthers there'd be blood-and-guts everywhere, then torched his former club for his best game of the season.
▲ Quarterback Joe Flacco signed a $100-million deal, then celebrated by going to McDonald's.
▲ Guarantees in life: Death, taxes, and the Ravens' swagger-filled defense continuing to be an absolute terror.
▼ Outside linebacker Terrell Suggs's history of domestic violence allegations somehow flew under the radar.
T-12. New Orleans Saints
▲ Drew Brees proved everyone who said short quarterbacks can't succeed in the NFL wrong.
▲ Marques Colston is one of the league's best stories. It's easy to forget he was selected in the seventh round in 2006.
▼ When Jimmy Graham was traded to the Seahawks, the team lost a lot of its charisma (and goal-post dunks, too).
T-10. New York Jets
▲ Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie back in New York just feels right. The star cornerback duo were reunited for a second stint in the Big Apple after signing in free agency, which speaks to the allure of the club.
▲ For fans who appreciate defensive football, it doesn't get much better than the Jets' beastly defensive line or secondary.
▼ Geno Smith has a long way to go before he proves he has the mental makeup of a franchise quarterback.
T-10. Arizona Cardinals
▲ Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is the definition of class, and has engendered respect from teammates and colleagues alike.
▲ Wide receiver John Brown has the best touchdown dance in football.
▼ Patrick Peterson griped about how he's the league's best cornerback, then surrendered eight touchdowns in 2014. Put your money where your mouth is, dude.
9. Pittsburgh Steelers
▲ Antonio Brown and Le'Veon Bell are the most exciting wide receiver-running back combo in football.
▲ Martavis Bryant scored eight touchdowns on just 26 receptions as a rookie, and recorded the longest reception of the season. He's emerging as one of the league's most exciting young players.
▼ Without that dominant defense, the Steelers are no longer likable for the same reasons they once were. The retirement of Troy Polamalu and Ike Taylor hurts the team in this respect.
8. New York Giants
▲ Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.'s physics-defying catches call into question whether he's even a human being. Beckham may already be the most thrilling player in the NFL.
▲ Wide receiver Victor Cruz's touchdown salsa dance is always entertaining.
▼ Eli Manning's sense of humor is underappreciated, but there's no getting around how dull he is most of the time.
T-6. Houston Texans
▲ Defensive end J.J. Watt is arguably the most likable player in the game today. The reigning Defensive Player of the Year might be the best, too.
▲ Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins makes highlight-reel plays look easy.
▼ It's impossible to get excited about any of the quarterbacks on the Texans' roster.
T-6. Carolina Panthers
▲ Linebacker Thomas Davis received the 2014 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award for his work with the Thomas Davis Defending Dreams Foundation, a non-profit providing free programs for thousands of underprivileged children and their families.
▲ Unbelievable production aside, linebacker Luke Kuechly is a lot of fun to watch. He's one of the league's rangiest players, and has an uncanny ability to make tackles from out of nowhere.
▲ Cam Newton's "Superman" touchdown celebration is one of the NFL's best trademark moves, and his gallant running style makes the Panthers' offense aesthetically pleasing.
5. New England Patriots
▲ Everything about tight end Rob Gronkowski screams fun, with the All-Pro appearing seemingly everywhere over the offseason. It's Gronk's world and we're just living in it.
▲ Even with all his past successes, Tom Brady would still do anything to win. He's also a budding social media superstar.
▼ You have to respect him as one of the all-time greats, but disliking Brady after the Deflategate circus is understandable. It's hard to believe he was innocent of all allegations in the Wells Report.
4. Indianapolis Colts
▲ Quarterback Andrew Luck compliments defensive players for the hits they make on the field. He also graduated with a degree from Stanford in architectural design. How can you not like this guy?
▲ Are there two players more deserving of a late-career Super Bowl run than wide receiver Andre Johnson and running back Frank Gore?
▼ This is a faceless defense, with Robert Mathis and Vontae Davis the only players to warrant national attention.
T-2. Denver Broncos
▲ Quarterback Peyton Manning is one of the best to ever play the game, and he's also proven to be quite entertaining in many off-field things he does, with numerous endorsements showing the lighter side of his personality.
▲ Outside linebacker Von Miller's checkered past would be harder to stomach if he didn't seem like such a fun-loving guy.
▲ Chris Harris is one of the league's best stories, ascending as an undrafted free agent to become one of the league's best cornerbacks.
T-2. Green Bay Packers
▲ Quarterback Aaron Rodgers isn’t just the NFL's MVP, he's also funny (just read his Twitter feed), charitable (especially for children’s charities), and smart (he beat an astronaut on Jeopardy). Some guys just have it all.
▲ Guard T.J. Lang is another great and underrated presence on social media.
▲ Packers players seem to truly care about Green Bay. Many take below-market deals to stay with the team.
▲ Aesthetically, Green Bay's offense is as fun as it gets to watch.
1. Seattle Seahawks
▲Cornerback Richard Sherman and defensive end Michael Bennett are arguably the league's most quotable players. Their respective acts would become bothersome if they didn't back them up with excellent performances.
▲ Running back Marshawn Lynch is a national hero. As a bonus, his nickname - "Beast Mode" - is the perfect embodiment of his eloquent yet bruising playing style.
▲ Quarterback Russell Wilson's commitment to visiting kids at Seattle Children's Hospital is admirable. The former third-round pick was called too short by many analysts, but he just keeps winning.
▲ Tight end Jimmy Graham's goal-post dunks may shatter the sound barrier at CenturyLink Field.
▼Linebacker Bruce Irvin starting a fight with seconds left in the Super Bowl was classless. So were Irvin's April Fools' Day tweets about getting a DUI.
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