If you don't already, you should know it was the fine folks at NFL Films who dubbed the Dallas Cowboys "America's Team" more than three decades ago. There wasn't any quantitative research to support the nickname, just that then-location director Bob Ryan noticed plenty of Cowboys fans at stadiums across the country.
As legendary Films narrator John Facenda said at the opening of the team's 1978 yearbook highlight: "They appear on television so often that their faces are as familiar to the public as presidents and movie stars. They are the Dallas Cowboys, America's Team."
Not anymore, they aren't.
A generation later, actual data exists and reveals the Cowboys aren't "America's Team," having been replaced by the Green Bay Packers, according to Public Policy Polling's newest national survey.
The survey showed 22 percent of voters indicated the Packers as their favorite NFL team, followed by 11 percent for the Cowboys and 8 percent for the Chicago Bears, New York Giants and Pittsburgh Steelers. In fact, PPP's survey results said the Cowboys actually are America's least favorite team with 22 percent of the vote.
So what gives? What are some possible reasons for the Cowboys' unfavorable standing with the country?
Tony Romo's very essence as a quarterback might have something to do with it; his past relationship with Jessica Simpson probably doesn't help. Perhaps it's that Jimmy Johnson's "How 'bout them Cowboys" slogan growing more annoying over the years. Maybe fans don't like the vibe they get from owner Jerry Jones. Who knows?
As for the Packers and their popularity, they have the small-town charm, the most polite fans you'll ever encounter and a rich history and tradition. They also play in the mecca of NFL stadiums, and it probably doesn't hurt that they're the reigning Super Bowl champions.
So, even if the Packers aren't your favorite team, what is there to hate (Bears fans notwithstanding)?
IMO, the Cowboys never have been "America's Team". It's always been the Packers.