The Rising Stars of American Football and its Worldwide Popularity

November 24, 2020 by Staff

The future of an American football player is full of surprises and a few lucky ones manage to stand out enough to become rising star players. Some players, like Patrick Mahomes with the Chiefs, make an immediate impact, while others take a while to get noticed; such as Aaron Rodgers in the Packers. In either case, the star players are incredibly important for the industry, because they help to draw in fan bases and, in turn, revenue.

A lot of factors are evaluated by the NFLPA before deciding on which players deserve to be added to the list of Rising Stars, these factors are listed on Their on-field performance is important, but there is also much more to it. Social media engagement, content and marketing demand from NFLPA partners, fantasy football popularity, and the size of fan bases are also assessed. This is due to the fact that the Rising Stars need to have marketing potential and be able to launch social media campaigns. These upcoming players are expected to be the face of brands and product lines, and to create promotional strategies for the upcoming season - so they need to be up to the task.

Rising Stars

Expected to be part of the Top 50 retail stars is Cincinnati Bengals’ Joe Burrow, who is also a fan favorite. Of all the listed rookies, including Chase Young from Washington Redskins, Tua Tagovailoa from Miami Dolphins, and CeeDee Lamb from Dallas Cowboys, Burrow has the highest social media engagement. Almost 93% of its audience has only started following him in the past year, proving his rise in popularity in an extremely short time frame.

Popular veterans are also added to the Rising Stars list, since the retail business thrives on top players. However, only those who haven’t appeared on any previous quarterly or year-end NFLPA Top 50 Player Sales List, are taken into consideration. Nick Chubb of Cleveland Browns, Aaron Jones of Green Bay Packers, and D.K. Metcalf of the Seattle Seahawks are three of the veterans to keep an eye on. Metcalf is the one leading the social media growth, with more than one million followers in the past year alone. 

Worldwide Popularity

We can see at that American football keeps growing, attracting people from all around the globe and becoming a popular sport around the world. Considering the NFL is worth $9 billion, while college football is worth around $6 billion, there is clearly an audience that goes beyond North America’s borders. One of the main reasons for that is the spectacularity of the Super Bowl, which is watched by over 100 million each season.

The games receive great coverage in countries such as the UK, having evolved from the British game of rugby. Many fans are also tapping into the growing international sports betting markets available for American football. Sites like, for example, offer a betting bonus guide to help fans get access to sports events including the NFL. It advises on the best sportsbooks and welcome bonuses available for American football, which can help international fans engage with the sport through wagering on the results.

Currently, there are six European teams that are part of the European Federation of American Football, while Europe has its own championship. Germany, Austria, and Finland are amongst the countries that have embraced the sport. While soccer and cricket still remain the most followed sports in the world, American football is ninth globally and appears very capable of moving up the leaderboard in the future.