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The 25 Richest NFL Team Owners

Andrew Lisa
·15 min read
Craig Lassig/EPA-EFE
Craig Lassig/EPA-EFE

For the megarich, ownership of a sports franchise is the ultimate trophy — and an NFL team is the biggest cap feather of them all. Some of the richest NFL team owners inherited their franchises as part of massive hand-me-down fortunes.

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Other owners bought their teams after amassing enormous wealth on their own. In a few rare cases, the family fortune is actually based on ownership of the team. Team owners are ranked from least to most wealth, primarily based on data from Forbes.

All the owners on this list are rich — sometimes even richer than the teams they own.

Last updated: Jan. 22, 2021

Bill Kostroun/AP/Shutterstock / Bill Kostroun/AP/Shutterstock
Bill Kostroun/AP/Shutterstock / Bill Kostroun/AP/Shutterstock

John Mara: $500 Million Net Worth

  • Team: New York Giants

  • Owner since: 2005

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $4.3 billion

John Mara, whose net worth is estimated at $500 million, owns half of the New York Giants. Steve Tisch owns the other half. Mara is the third generation of his family to own part of the franchise, after his grandfather, Tim, founded the team in 1925. Tim Mara paid $500 for the team, so that’s a pretty good return on the investment.

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Keith Srakocic/AP/Shutterstock / Keith Srakocic/AP/Shutterstock
Keith Srakocic/AP/Shutterstock / Keith Srakocic/AP/Shutterstock

Daniel Rooney Trust & Arthur Rooney II: $500 Million Net Worth

  • Team: Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Owner since: 2017

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $3 billion

Art Rooney II took over running the Steelers franchise in 2003, and he inherited a major stake from his father, Dan Rooney, in 2017. Rooney II, who became one of three third-generation owners in the NFL, has a law degree from Duquesne University and has a position with a Pittsburgh law firm. Art Rooney Sr. paid a $2,500 franchise fee to start the team in 1933.

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Phelan M Ebenhack/AP / Shutterstock.com
Phelan M Ebenhack/AP / Shutterstock.com

Glazer Family: $1 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Owner since: 2014

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $2.3 billion

Malcolm Glazer was the patriarch of the Glazer family, and when he died in 2014, he left his descendants an empire built on the First Allied Corporation, which includes millions of square feet of retail shopping space. He also willed them the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which he bought in 1995 for $192 million. Bryan Glazer, the son of Malcolm, is estimated to be worth $1 billion.

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Christopher Szagola/Csm/Shutters / Christopher Szagola/Csm/Shutters
Christopher Szagola/Csm/Shutters / Christopher Szagola/Csm/Shutters

Dean Spanos: $1 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Los Angeles Chargers

  • Owner since: 2018

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $3.2 billion

Dean Spanos took over full ownership of the Chargers in 2018 when his father, Alex Spanos, passed away. Alex Spanos purchased majority interest in the Chargers in 1984 for $72 million. Spanos drew heavy criticism and scorn for moving the franchise from San Diego to Los Angeles in 2017.

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Ron Schwane/AP / Shutterstock.com
Ron Schwane/AP / Shutterstock.com

Pat Bowlen Trust: $1 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Denver Broncos

  • Owner since: 1984

  • How much they purchased the team for: $470 million

  • How much the team is worth: $3.2 billion

Iconic Broncos owner Pat Bowlen was a successful lawyer and real estate developer before he bought the Broncos in 1984. During his 35-year tenure, Denver won 60% of its games, a winning percentage topped only by the Patriots. When Bowlen died at the age of 75 in June 2019, Celebrity Net Worth estimated his net worth at $1 billion. The Broncos are held in a trust in his name until new ownership is decided, with a court case scheduled for the first half of 2021.

Mike Fuentes/AP / Shutterstock.com
Mike Fuentes/AP / Shutterstock.com

Steve Tisch $1.1 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: New York Giants

  • Owner since: 2005

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $3.9 billion

Steve Tisch, whose net worth is estimated at $1.1 billion, owns half of the New York Giants — John Mara, who appeared earlier in this list, owns the other half. In 2005, he took over a 50% stake in the Giants, which his father, Bob Tisch, purchased for $75 million in 1991 — the entire team sold for $150 million.

The elder Tisch co-founded the financial conglomerate Loews Corp. in 1946, and when he died in 2005, Steve Tish became half-owner of the No. 3 most valuable team in the NFL. His mother Joan was the largest Loews shareholder, and when she died in 2017, Steve Tisch inherited her fortune.

Charles Rex Arbogast/AP / Shutterstock.com
Charles Rex Arbogast/AP / Shutterstock.com

Virginia Halas McCaskey and Family: $1.3 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Chicago Bears

  • Owner since: 1920

  • How much they purchased the team for: $100

  • How much the team is worth: $3.5 billion

Few teams have a longer and prouder lineage than the Chicago Bears, whose 1,000-game history began in 1920 — the franchise is one of only two remaining charter members of the National Football League. That year, George Halas bought the team for $100 — three years before his daughter Virginia was born in 1923. The oldest owner in the NFL, Virginia Halas McCaskey — whose net worth Forbes estimated at $1.3 billion in 2015 — is among the only owners whose family fortune comes directly from owning a team, as opposed to buying a team after becoming independently wealthy.

Craig Lassig/EPA-EFE / Shutterstock.com
Craig Lassig/EPA-EFE / Shutterstock.com

Zygmunt Wilf: $1.3 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Minnesota Vikings

  • Owner since: 2005

  • How much they purchased the team for: $600 million

  • How much the team is worth: $2.9 billion

Zygmunt “Zygi” Wilf is a German immigrant and the son of Polish-Jewish Holocaust survivors. His father and uncle formed a real estate company, which Hunt joined after working as a lawyer. After assuming control of the firm, he dramatically expanded the company’s portfolio, which now includes tens of thousands of apartments and vast commercial holdings. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he has a fortune of $1.3 billion.

Colin E Braley/AP / Shutterstock.com
Colin E Braley/AP / Shutterstock.com

The Hunt Family: $2 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Kansas City Chiefs

  • Owner since: 1974

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $2.5 billion

The Hunt family is descended from American oil royalty. Their fortune can be traced to legendary wildcatter H.L. Hunt, who was once the richest man in the world and inspired the character J.R. Ewing on the TV show “Dallas.” He had 15 children, and his many descendants control a vast network of energy companies, resorts, and real estate and sports franchises, including the Kansas City Chiefs, which H.L. Hunt purchased for $25,000 in 1960. Hunt died in 1974. Hunt’s late son Lamar is believed to have named the Super Bowl. Clark Hunt, who now runs the Chiefs, is worth $2 billion, according to CelebrityNetWorth.com.

Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP / Shutterstock.com
Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP / Shutterstock.com

Dan Snyder: $2.6 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Washington Football Team

  • Owner since: 1999

  • How much they purchased the team for: $750 million

  • How much the team is worth: $3.5 billion

Dan Snyder made his money through his marketing firm Snyder Communications, which he formed after dropping out of college. He took the company public in 1996 and then sold it to a French company in 2000 — the year after he bought the franchise then known as the Redskins — for $2.1 billion. The team is currently searching for a new name and is known as the Washington Football Team. Today, Snyder’s net worth today is estimated at $2.6 billion.

AP / Shutterstock.com
AP / Shutterstock.com

Jeffrey Lurie: $2.7 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Philadelphia Eagles

  • Owner since: 1994

  • How much they purchased the team for: $1.85 billion

  • How much the team is worth: $3.4 billion

Jeffrey Lurie, worth $2.7 billion, has owned the Eagles for more than a quarter-century. He took out a loan to buy the team, but he earned his fortune in the movie and media business. He became an executive in the General Cinema Corporation, founded by his grandfather in 1983, and later founded Chestnut Hill Productions.

AP / Shutterstock.com
AP / Shutterstock.com

15. Jimmy and Dee Haslam: $2.9 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Cleveland Browns

  • Owner since: 2012

  • How much they purchased the team for: $987 million

  • How much the team is worth: $2.3 billion

In 1958, Jim Haslam bought a single gas station for $6,000. In the ensuing decades, he turned that into the truck stop empire that is Pilot Flying J, which has 750 locations in 44 states and did $29 billion in revenue in 2018. His son Jimmy, along with Jimmy’s wife, Dee, bought the Browns in 2012. Jimmy had served on the Pilot board of directors since he was a college student. Jim Haslam’s other son became the governor of Tennessee. Jimmy and Dee Haslam are worth $2.9 billion.

Aj Mast/AP / Shutterstock.com
Aj Mast/AP / Shutterstock.com

Jim Irsay: $3 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Indianapolis Colts

  • Owner since: 1997

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $2.8 billion

Robert Irsay bought the Colts for $14 million in 1972, and his son, Jim, spent his childhood with the team, living with them in the summer and traveling with them on the team bus as a kid. A college football player himself, Jim Irsay worked various jobs for the Colts for his entire life, including ticket sales and public relations. When the elder Irsay died in 1997, Jim Irsay became the sole owner and led Indy to a successful run that included a Super Bowl. He is now worth $3 billion.

Jeff Chiu/AP / Shutterstock.com
Jeff Chiu/AP / Shutterstock.com

Denise York and Family: $3.2 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: San Francisco 49ers

  • Owner since: 2001

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $3.8 billion

The 49ers are the No. 6 most valuable team in the NFL, and the family of Denise York owns 90% of it. Her father, construction giant Edward DeBartolo Sr., bought the team for $13 million in 1977. The wife of pathologist John York, Denise gained control of the 49ers from her brother, who owned the team for 23 years before running into legal trouble. Her family is worth $3.2 billion.

Bill Feig/AP / Shutterstock.com
Bill Feig/AP / Shutterstock.com

Gayle Benson: $2.5 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: New Orleans Saints

  • Owner since: 2018

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $2.5 billion

Gayle Benson inherited not just the Saints, but also the New Orleans Pelicans, when her husband, wealthy businessman Tom Benson, passed away in 2018. He purchased the team in 1985 for $70.2 million. Gayle Benson, Tom Benson’s third wife, is worth $3.3 billion.

Lynne Sladky/AP / Shutterstock.com
Lynne Sladky/AP / Shutterstock.com

Robert Wood Johnson IV: $3.5 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: New York Jets

  • Owner since: 2000

  • How much they purchased the team for: $635 million

  • How much the team is worth: $3.5 billion

Despite being perennially and predictably terrible, the Jets are consistently one of the 10 most valuable teams in the NFL. Their owner, Woody Johnson, is worth $4.2 billion, according to a report by Bloomberg made shortly after President Donald Trump nominated him to serve as ambassador to Great Britain in 2017. Most of his money is tied up in the Jets, but he’s not a self-made man by any means. He’s the most famous of the heirs of Robert Wood Johnson, who founded Johnson & Johnson in 1886.

Jason Behnken/AP / Shutterstock.com
Jason Behnken/AP / Shutterstock.com

Janice McNair: $3.9 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Houston Texans

  • Owner since: 2018

  • How much they purchased the team for: Inherited

  • How much the team is worth: $3.3 billion

When Robert McNair died in 2018, his widow, Janice McNair, inherited her late husband’s 80% stake in the 32nd and most recent expansion team to enter the NFL. Robert paid $600 million for the Houston Texans after selling his power generator company Cogen Technologies to energy firm (and soon-to-be criminal enterprise) Enron in 1999. Janice McNair is worth $3.9 billion.

AP / Shutterstock.com
AP / Shutterstock.com

Stephen Bisciotti: $4.6 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Baltimore Ravens

  • Owner since: 2004

  • How much they purchased the team for: $600 million

  • How much the team is worth: $2.98 billion

Stephen Bisciotti, who was raised by a single mother in Baltimore, started the staffing firm Allegis Group with his cousin Jim Davis — also now a billionaire — in a basement in 1983. Today, Bisciotti is worth $4.6 billion and owns the Ravens, who won a Super Bowl most recently in 2013. In 2018, Allegis Group did $13.6 billion in revenue.

Mike Groll/AP / Shutterstock.com
Mike Groll/AP / Shutterstock.com

Terrence and Kim Pegula: $5.1 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Buffalo Bills

  • Owner since: 2014

  • How much they purchased the team for: $1.4 billion

  • How much the team is worth: $2.1 billion

Fracking magnate Terrence Pegula, along with his wife, Kim, have an estimated net worth of $5.1 billion — but it wasn’t always that way. He founded his energy company, East Resources, in 1983 with a $7,500 loan. In 2010, he sold East Resources to the Royal Dutch Shell company for $4.7 billion. The undisputed monarchs of Buffalo sports, the Pegulas also own the Buffalo Sabres NHL team.

Brian Blanco/AP / Shutterstock.com
Brian Blanco/AP / Shutterstock.com

7Arthur Blank: $6 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Atlanta Falcons

  • Owner since: 2002

  • How much they purchased the team for: $545 million

  • How much the team is worth: $2.9 billion

If you’ve ever shopped at Home Depot, you’ve contributed to the $6 billion fortune of Arthur Blank. He co-founded the hardware giant with Bernie Marcus in 1978, became one of the richest people in the world, and stepped down as Home Depot co-chairman in 2001, a year before buying the Falcons. In 2012, he signed the Giving Pledge and vowed to donate the majority of his wealth to charity.

David J Phillip/AP / Shutterstock.com
David J Phillip/AP / Shutterstock.com

Robert Kraft: $6.6 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: New England Patriots

  • Owner since: 1994

  • How much they purchased the team for: $172 million

  • How much the team is worth: $4.4 billion

As a child, Robert Kraft sold newspapers outside of the former Braves Stadium in Boston. He began amassing his $6.9 billion fortune through a successful packaging and paper business and went on to assemble a sporting empire that now includes stakes in the UFC and the New England Revolution MLS soccer club. The jewel in his crown, however, is the six-time Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, which was the greatest dynasty in football history before finally missing the playoffs this season.

Wilfredo Lee/AP / Shutterstock.com
Wilfredo Lee/AP / Shutterstock.com

Stephen M. Ross: $7.2 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Miami Dolphins

  • Owner since: 2008

  • How much they purchased the team for: $1.1 billion

  • How much the team is worth: $2.9 billion

Tax-attorney-turned-real-estate-developer Stephen M. Ross amassed a $7.2 billion fortune, in part, through his Related Co. real estate firm. It’s responsible for $60 billion in property development and acquisition, including Manhattan’s Hudson Yards, which opened to the public in 2019. Ross also owns major stakes in a variety of restaurant chains, SoulCycle and Equinox Fitness.

Matt Dunham/AP / Shutterstock.com
Matt Dunham/AP / Shutterstock.com

Shahid Khan: $7.9 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Owner since: 2011

  • How much they purchased the team for: $770 million

  • How much the team is worth: $2.5 billion

A self-made man now worth $7.9 billion, Shahid Khan is an engineer by trade. In 1980, he bought Flex-N-Gate, an auto parts supplier, from his former employer. He then put his engineering background to work in designing a hugely successful one-piece truck bumper, and in the ensuing decades, he grew his business to include 66 plants run by 24,000 employees.

Nick Ut/AP / Shutterstock.com
Nick Ut/AP / Shutterstock.com

Stanley Kroenke: $8.3 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Los Angeles Rams

  • Owner since: 2010

  • How much they purchased the team for: $750 million

  • How much the team is worth: $4 billion

Real estate powerbroker Stanley Kroenke is worth $8.3 billion, much of which can be credited to the 30 million square feet of mostly commercial real estate in his bulging portfolio. Kroenke boasts a title coveted by the elite since the founding of America — landowner. He personally owns more than 2 million acres of ranches in the U.S. and Canada. A major sports mogul, his holdings are not limited to the Rams. He also owns the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets, the Colorado Rapids and the Arsenal soccer club in Britain.

Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP / Shutterstock.com
Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP / Shutterstock.com

Jerry Jones: $8.4 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Dallas Cowboys

  • Owner since: 1989

  • How much they purchased the team for: $150 million

  • How much the team is worth: $5.7 billion

Jerry Jones, who is worth $8.4 billion, has both football and business baked into his DNA. He originally made his money as a successful oil wildcatter, but before that, he served as co-captain of the University of Arkansas’ 1964 national championship football team. Although they haven’t played in a Super Bowl since the 1995 season, the Cowboys are the most valuable team in not just the NFL, but in all sports, by a mile — the next-most-valuable team, the New York Yankees, is worth 20% less. All of this happened under the unprecedented stewardship of Jones, who revolutionized the modern NFL and changed how it’s marketed, sold, merchandized and contracted to the media.

Chuck Burton/AP / Shutterstock.com
Chuck Burton/AP / Shutterstock.com

David Tepper: $13 Billion Net Worth

  • Team: Carolina Panthers

  • Owner since: 2018

  • How much they purchased the team for: $2.3 billion

  • How much the team is worth: $2.6 billion

Widely hailed as the greatest hedge fund manager of his generation, David Tepper made a lot of money for his clients — and himself. His net worth is estimated to be $13 billion, making him the richest individual NFL owner by a longshot. A former Goldman Sachs junk bond manager, Tepper’s Appaloosa Management fund oversees $5.6 billion in assets — small potatoes compared to the $20 billion it managed at its peak.

More From GOBankingRates

George Malone contributed to the reporting for this article.

Methodology: In order to discover the 25 richest NFL owners, GOBankingRates sourced every NFL team’s ownership from Forbes “Sports Money: 2020 NFL Valuations”. Once the 32 owners were identified, GOBankingRates used Forbes “The World’s Real-time Billionaires” and CelebrityNetWorth.com’s data to find each owners (1) net worth. GOBankingRates also found each team’s (2) value; (3) year purchased; and (4) price paid. All data was collected and is up to date as of January 5, 2021.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: The 25 Richest NFL Team Owners