There are NFL teams without Cheerleaders, which may surprise some fans. In fact, there are six teams in the league that don’t have a cheerleading squad on the field for home games. The cheerleading industry is cut-throat and controversial, to say the least. While the benefits of being a cheerleader can lead to more lucrative roles for women, the culture is extreme. Learn what NFL teams don’t have cheerleaders and more with this post below!
What Football Teams Don’t Have NFL Cheerleaders in 2020
- Buffalo Bills
- Chicago Bears
- Cleveland Browns
- Green Bay Packers
- New York Giants
- Pittsburgh Steelers
Did These Six Teams Ever Have Cheerleaders in the Past?
Only the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns have never had official cheerleaders on their team but had spirit squads over the years. The Buffalo Bills had cheerleaders on their team but closed the program down after a few of them sued the group. The Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers had cheerleaders up until 1969 and 1977, respectively. After the Chicago Bears owner, George Halas, died in 1983, his daughter, Virginia Halas McCaskey, took over the team and did not renew the contract with the cheerleaders.
Hostile and Toxic Work Environment Charges
Since the inception of NFL cheerleaders in the 1950s, cheerleaders have had a bumpy road with their careers. Some reasons for the controversy are the over-sexualization of the girls, specifically for a male-dominated audience. While the cheerleaders are there to entertain the fans at the games, dressing the girls is overly sexualizing clothing may turn off some fans.
In addition to their look, many cheerleaders have filed lawsuits against their teams, which may surprise some fans. Some groups that have had cheerleaders’ lawsuit cases are due to harassment, assault, and pay. Some teams with lawsuits against them include the Oakland Raiders, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Buffalo Bills, and New York Jets.
What NFL Teams Have Cheerleaders?
Outside of six teams that don’t currently use cheerleaders, the rest of the league does. Here is the complete list in alphabetical order of each group that uses Cheerleaders in their organization.
- Atlanta Falcons
- Arizona Cardinals
- Baltimore Ravens
- Carolina Panthers
- Cincinnati Bengals
- Dallas Cowboys
- Denver Broncos
- Detroit Lions
- Houston Texans
- Indianapolis Colts
- Jacksonville Jaguars
- Kansas City Chiefs
- Las Vegas Raiders
- Los Angeles Chargers
- Los Angeles Rams
- Miami Dolphins
- Minnesota Vikings
- New England Patriots
- The New Orleans Saints
- New York Jets
- Philadelphia Eagles
- San Francisco 49ers
- Seattle Seahawks
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Tennessee Titans
- Washington Football Team (Redskins)
How Much Money Do NFL Cheerleaders Make?
The salary range for cheerleaders is between $20-$75k a year, but multiple factors vary. Some reasons for the wide range of salaries depend on being a professional NFL Cheerleader or a Supporting Cheerleader. Experience also adds more compensation for individual cheerleaders so that a veteran will make more money than a rookie. Finally, cheerleaders can make more money when the NFL team makes the playoffs since they can work more games.
The hourly breakdown for cheerleaders for all teams is between $15-$20. On average, cheerleaders can expect to make around $500 per game. Salary ranges per game can change when the team goes more in-depth in the playoffs, for example.
However, there have been plenty of issues with pay over the years for cheerleaders. Since teams categorize cheerleaders as individual contractors, they can cut around certain perks. For example, team cheerleaders have to buy their own outfits, which makes being a cheerleader financially stressful. If an outfit becomes damaged during a game, a cheerleader may be on the ropes to cover the cost, which is not the case for NFL players.
When Did NFL Cheerleading Begin?
The first official cheer squad for the NFL took place with the Baltimore Colts in the 1950s. Over the years, more teams like the Dallas Cowboys began incorporating cheerleaders on the field purely for fan interest purposes. As the years went by, cheerleaders grew in popularity for their sex appeal and dancing for a mostly male-dominated viewership. The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders grew in fame by performing in the 1976 Super Bowl and at the USO Show “America and Her Music” on a USS cruiser in 1983.
How Did Cheerleading Change Over the Years?
When NFL Cheerleading began in the 1950s, women had long sleeve knitted sweaters, long skirts, and traditional pom-poms on their hands to pump up the crowd. As more teams began incorporating cheerleaders on their field, cheerleaders began designing their attire to match their football team and the team mascot. For example, The Oakland Raiderettes (Oakland Raiders Team) in the 1977 Super Bowl had matching colors (White, Black, and Silver) to match the Raiders on the field. Incorporating teams’ colors to match cheerleading outfits are also trendy for high school and college teams.
Do NFL Cheerleaders Travel with the Team?
Cheerleading is a part-time job, so they usually don’t travel with the team. Like the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, some teams will travel with the team when they go on the road, but some don’t. Cheerleaders will travel with the team during the playoffs, however.
What Do Cheerleaders Do Outside of Football Games?
Outside of cheering on the home team at games, cheerleaders help out at many charity events in cities throughout the year. In addition to the charity events, you will find cheerleaders showing up training camp games and doing photo shoots for marketing material.
Since Cheerleading is a part-time job, many of these team members do other gigs outside of the NFL. Some cheerleaders land fashion industry jobs, TV commercials, and movie deals. One of the most famous Ravens cheerleaders to gain additional stardom was Stacy Keibler, who become part of the WWE.
Conclusion on NFL Teams Without Cheerleaders
While Cheerleaders can bring a lot of excitement to fans of a football team, they also have a dark side, which is why six teams don’t use them anymore. The toxic workplace environment and assault are two of the most significant reasons why some groups no longer use cheerleaders. In addition to the workplace environment, cheerleaders are paid minimum wage, which has caused some issues in the past. It comes down to what the team would like to do, and some groups have changed their handling of cheerleaders to make the experience more positive than it may have been in the past.