The Reasons Why Six NFL Teams Still Have No Cheerleading Squads: A Fan’s View

Only six NFL teams do not have cheerleading squads.

New England Patriots cheerleaders prepare for the upcoming season.
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In these cities, the reasons for not having cheerleading teams vary from fan indifference to frigid winter temperatures that would make sideline dancing quite uncomfortable.

Here's a look at the NFL teams without cheerleaders, and the reasons why they don't have them:

Green Bay Packers

When the Packers played the Steelers in the 2011 Super Bowl, it was the first time in the game's 45-year history that no cheerleaders were present.

Green Bay has some diehard football fans, and I believe the reason why they don't have cheerleaders is because the residents of this town has their focus where it counts - on the action going on during the game.

It probably also doesn't help that the team plays in extremely cold Wisconsin winter temperatures, which would make cheering very uncomfortable.

According to the Packers website, "The Packers haven't had official cheerleaders since 1988, however cheerleaders from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and St. Norbert College appear at home games throughout the season. The Packers discontinued their squad of official cheerleaders in large part due to fan indifference. There are no plans to return to official cheerleaders."

Chicago Bears

Chicago used to have a cheerleading squad called the "Honey Bears," who performed on the sidelines in the late-1970s and mid-80s.

According to a Fox Chicago report, the leader of the Honey Bears has been quoted as saying the Bears informed her they "wanted to be about blood-and-guts football and football only."

In 2011, a website sprung up as a petition to gather fan support for a new Chicago Honey Bears squad.

New York Giants

The Giants have always taken a blue-collar, button-down approach to football, and that way of doing business extends to the sidelines.

"Philosophically we have always had issues with sending scantily clad women out on the field to entertain our fans," said John Mara, the Giants co-owner, in a 2010 New York Times interview. "It's just not part of our philosophy."

He added that "Some teams are comfortable with not only having cheerleaders but selling cheerleader swimsuit calendars or in a couple cases lingerie calendars. It's not something you're going to see the Giants do. Not while I'm around, anyway."

Pittsburgh Steelers

In many ways, the Steelers are the mirror image of the Giants.

They entertain fans by building championship-caliber teams, each and every year. For them, it's all about what happens on the field and not on the sidelines. They feel that cheering squads would take away from the overall gameday experience for fans.

The Steelers had a cheerleading team in the 1960s, but got rid of them to focus more on the football action on the field.

Cleveland Browns

The Browns had cheerleaders at one point in their history, but apparently stopped because of the cold Ohio weather.

"We had them one year. They looked crazy. It was ridiculous," Pat Modell, wife of the former Browns owner, said recently in a Cleveland.com report. "It was so cold in Cleveland that it almost looked like they were wearing wooly pajamas."

Detroit Lions

The Lions don't have an official cheerleading squad, but a group of about a dozen young ladies from the Detroit area started up an unofficial dance team called the "Pride."

The Lions don't appear to have any plans of having official cheerleaders in the near future, but the Pride are filling in as best they can to try to catch the attention of the team brass and start a buzz. The Pride hopes to one day become the official cheerleading team of the Lions.

Eric Holden is a fan of the New York Jets Flight Crew cheerleading squad. Follow him on Twitter @ericholden.

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Updated Saturday, Mar 24, 2012