The National Football League, or NFL, has some of the toughest athletes in the world. Despite all the pads, helmets and other protection, its players are vulnerable to all kinds of injuries. Peyton Manning had to sit out a full season because of injuries to his neck. His problems were deemed severe enough for his original team, the Indianapolis Colts, to release him even though he was practically the face of the franchise. That he was able to recover extremely well with the Denver Broncos is testament to the toughness of the sport’s players.
Even the ones who do the hitting are vulnerable. Junior Seau, a former linebacker of the San Diego Chargers before he ended his career with the New England Patriots, committed suicide after suffering from brain damage that was also found in other deceased players. It just shows that whether you are in the offensive end or the defensive side, one can succumb to injuries no matter how much you cover up.
Contrast all these to the cheerleaders that we see on the sidelines. They are scantily dressed and they show off a lot of skin for the crowd in the stadium and the audience on television. They are cheerful and bubbly even when the team is down four touchdowns with a few minutes left in the game. And after the testosterone overload brought about by all the hard hitting, trash talking, taunting and scowling in the game, the sight of the soft aura and smooth allure of the cheerleaders is certainly something to behold.
Some may think that cheerleading is just a sidelight to the game, or even a trivial matter. So along with trivia on the teams, here are the top 10 sexiest NFL cheerleaders.
10 Jacksonville Jaguars
After finishing the season with only two wins in 16 games, this team definitely needs a lot of cheering up. But it has not always been this sad. The franchise was granted to the city of Jacksonville only in 1993, the first time the NFL had given a new one since the 1976 season when Seattle and Tampa Bay were each awarded one. The Jaguars won four games that year, respectable given that they were just starting out in the league. They then went on to post four straight playoff appearances, even going to the AFC Championship game two times. Times have changed and the cheerleaders have a lot of work to do.
9 Atlanta Falcons
They were the top seed heading into the playoffs. They were up 17 points against the San Francisco 49ers. And, well, they blew it. Falcons fans need a Super Bowl to forget all the past heartaches. They once had Brett Favre but he never started a game. He made only five attempts, did not complete any and even threw two interceptions before being sent to Green Bay. They once had Deion Sanders for four years before he went to San Francisco. Both eventually got rings with their new teams.
8 Baltimore Ravens
Raven girls certainly led a lot of cheers as Baltimore went all the way this year to give Ray Lewis a fitting retirement gift. No, it’s not his very own harem of Raven cheerleaders, but a Super Bowl ring. Would he trade one for the other? It’s certainly not a bad offer.
7 Tennessee Titans
Fans still remember the Music City Miracle when they Frank Wychek threw a lateral to Kevin Dyson for the winning touchdown in the 2000 wildcard game versus the Buffalo Bills. It sent the entire city to heaven as the team eventually went to the Super Bowl before losing to the St. Louis Rams. One look at the cheerleaders however and they will always get another glimpse of heaven.
6 Denver Broncos
Broncos cheerleaders have always been busy. From “The Drive” to two Super Bowl titles, there is always something to cheer about. John Elway was actually drafted by the Indianapolis Colts, but he said he’d rather play baseball with the Yankees than play for the Colts. He got traded to the Broncos soon after. Last year, the Colts released Peyton Manning because of his injuries. The Broncos swooped him up and he turned in an MVP-caliber season.
5 Philadelphia Eagles
Good luck trying to control Eagles fans. They are still remembered for pelting Santa Claus with snow in the midst of their disastrous 1968 season. It is up to their cheerleaders to show the world why Philadelphia is called the “City of Brotherly Love.”
4 Miami Dolphins
The cheerleaders used to be known as the Starbrites, named after the car polish. And they had a lot to cheer about. The team owns the only perfect season in NFL history. They once had Dan Marino. They famously beat a perfection-seeking Chicago Bears in 1985. After Marino retired however, fans had more reasons to stare at the cheerleaders rather than watch the team play.
3 Indianapolis Colts
They had Peyton Manning, one of the greatest quarterbacks of the team who holds 30 franchise records. Neck injuries forced him out of the game and the Colts sent him to the Broncos. As luck would have it, the team ended up with Andrew Luck and it looks like the future is in good hands. And they have a bunch of cheerleaders to back them up all the way. When their coach was diagnosed with leukemia, a cheerleader offered to shave her head if fans donate at least $10,000.
2 Washington Redskins
They have seen both the worst and the best. They own the ugliest defeat in NFL playoff history after a 73-0 shellacking by the Bears in 1940. They refused to integrate until 1962 and did so only after they got threatened with eviction. But they also won the highest scoring game in history after beating the Giants 72-41 in 1966. And they have three Super Bowls.
1 Dallas Cowboys
America’s team used to have a cheering squad made up of male and female high school students called the CowBelles & Beaux. They sure have come a long way as Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders are the sexiest in the country. They are so popular that they have their own reality search show called “Making the Team.”