A Labor of Unrequited Love
The Gotham City Cheerleaders have one mission: to become the official cheerleading team of the Giants.
The team, started in 2011 by a former Washington Redskins cheerleader, Ana De Villegas, operates like any official N.F.L. cheerleading squad: It practices a few times a week, performs at events, has its own uniforms and even produces a swimsuit calendar.
But you will not see these cheerleaders on the sidelines at Giants home games. Instead, they hit the pavement outside MetLife Stadium, performing at tailgate parties in the parking lot with the hope that word of mouth and a growing fan base will persuade the franchise to bring them inside.
The Giants are one of six teams in the N.F.L. without an official cheerleading squad. John Mara, one of the Giants’ owners, has said, “It’s just not part of our philosophy.”
Pitched to, and photographed for, The New York Times.