Football

The favorite NFL team of the metro-east? Depends which county you live in.

It’s been four years since St. Louis has had its own NFL franchise, but the region is a mixed bag when it comes identifying the teams local fans root for since the Rams departed for Los Angeles.

Internet ticket outlet Vivid Seats teamed with social media publisher opendorse to identify the most popular NFL team in each U.S. county. Multiple factors were included in the market study, from social media interaction to merchandising and game ticket sales.

Among the eight southwestern Illinois counties that make up the metro-east, five different teams are identify as fan favorites, according to the study. Bond, Calhoun and Jersey counties each have joined the Indianapolis Colts band wagon, which has added several Illinois counties beyond the state’s eastern border.

St. Clair County has adopted the Tennessee Titans, likely because of Belleville native Adoree Jackson. The 18th overall draft pick of the 2017 draft is popular in Nashville for his kick-return skills and ball-hawking defense. And he’s endeared himself locally for his loyalty to the hometown and devotion to his mother, a breast-cancer survivor.

Madison County has followed with the west side of the Mississippi, which has thrown overwhelming support behind the cross-state Kansas City Chiefs. All but 14 Missouri counties now identify as Chiefs fans, according to the study.

In Monroe County, the Atlanta Falcons are the top team, which makes it an outlier in Illinois. Clinton County follows the Dallas Cowboys and the New England Patriots are the favorite of Randolph County fans.

No county in Illinois or Missouri backs the Rams.

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