Welcome to SB Nation FanPulse — a survey of fans across the NFL. Throughout the offseason, we send 32 polls to plugged in fans from each team. Los Angeles Rams fans, sign up HERE to join FanPulse.
Another week of FanPulse results, another week of extreme confidence for Rams fans:
Sure, there’s a dip this week going from 96% to 92%, but that’s still top 6 as the Rams are 2-0 and coming off of a Week 2 win over the New Orleans Saints.
As for Saints fans? The loss, both of the game and of QB Drew Brees to a thumb injury, means their confidence has cratered from 96% to 33%:
And really, that’s the biggest story this week from the aggregated results. The Cycle of the offseason is over and ran headfirst into football. Like every year, that means several fan bases who were extremely confident have issues (performance, injury or otherwise) that suddenly don’t have them as confident anymore.
Heading into Week 1, just four fan bases had less than 50% of their audience feeling confident. Now? A full 14 teams’ fans. Fittingly then, 14 teams had fan bases that were 80% or higher, nine of which were 90% or higher. Now? Down to 10 and six, respectively.
It is what it is. The football kills people’s dreams, then the Cycle builds them back up again. Looking forward to seeing it again in the offseason! Meanwhile, we got games to win.
As for our national question this week, it focused on some teams whose confidence has been shattered and who might be the first to do something about it. We’re only two games in, but we’re getting a sense of who the more disappointing teams could be based on who the most disappointing teams have been thus far. Who then might fire their head coach first?
Houston Texans Head Coach (and General Manager?) Bill O’Brien oversaw a rough offseason that has Texans fans pretty underwhelmed at the general state of the franchise. Sunday’s 1-point win over the Jacksonville Jaguars (more on that in a sec...) has stabilized things, but their upcoming four-game schedule is absolutely brutal.
The New York Giants went from a hot mess last season to a lava-level mess this offseason back to a hot mess this year. Rookie QB Daniel Jones is now coming in to start over QB Eli Manning this week. I’m sure that’ll fix things.
Carolina Panthers HC Ron Rivera is a fine coach, but the saga surrounding QB Cam Newton’s physical readiness isn’t getting better. Last year, it was his shoulder. This year, it’s his foot. Hard to see this going well for them this year. A loss in Week 3 to the winless Arizona Cardinals would send them into panic mode...if they’re not there already.
Oh, the Jags. Such drama. This week, it’s the seeming desire of CB Jalen Ramsey, one of the league’s best corners, requesting a trade after a sideline dustup with HC Doug Marrone. Wouldn’t have been surprised to see him lose this poll.
Not surprised at all, though, that it’s Washington Redskins HC Jay Gruden who our national FanPulse audience thinks will get canned first. At 0-2, they have the Chicago Bears on Monday night and the New England Patriots in Week 5. Gruden’s got a bit of a bad hand here with a choppy roster, the worst owner in sports, the worst-run franchise in sports and the combination of the latter two depriving him of star OT Trent Williams after Washington botched his handling following a medical operation this offseason. This might be a case of the head coach sometimes having to be the scapegoat for things going poorly around him in spite of him not really being the culprit. Suffice to say that rolling out QB Case Keenum while rookie QB Dwayne Haskins sits isn’t going to go over well for a fan base that was at 61% confidence following the 2019 NFL Draft that’s now down to 10%...
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