New WSJ/NBC Poll Shows Fans Following NFL Less Closely

Of the survey respondents without children, 49 percent say they would encourage their child to play another sport, which is a six-percent increase from four years ago.

A survey conducted by The Wall Street Journal and NBC News revealed that adults who say they follow the league closely have dropped 9 percent since 2014.

That includes 46 percent of parents with a child in the household (up 9 points since 2014), 53 percent of mothers (up 13 points) and 39 percent of fathers (up 6 points).

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In addition, the NBC/WSJ poll found that 33 percent of Americans believe the National Football League has taken meaningful action to reduce and prevent concussions - down from 41 percent in 2014.

The poll comes after findings of brain disease in deceased NFL football players, and after a spate of players refusing to stand for the national anthem. The first question asked people how closely they follow the NFL.

Those demographic groups include men ages 18-49 (a drop of 24 points), men without college degrees (-23 points) and white men (-22 points).

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The NFL is taking a big hit among its core audience, according to a poll released Friday.

The poll, conducted from January 13-17, did not ask its 900 participants why they are following the league with less interest.

The NBC/WSJ poll was conducted January 13-17 with 900 adults - including almost half reached by cellphone - and has an overall margin of error of plus-minus 3.3 percentage points. The poll has a 3.8% margin of error.

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