The Dallas Cowboys may not be able to claim the title of “America’s team” anymore, but they can still call themselves America’s Most Valuable Team.
The Cowboys increased in value by 10% over the past year and now are worth about $5.5 billion, according to Forbes, which annually puts a value on each of the National Football League teams. It’s the 13th straight year the Cowboys have ranked at the top in Forbes' value ranking, even though the team hasn’t played in a Super Bowl since it won its fifth more than two decades ago in 1995.
Average Value Up 10%
The average NFL team value also increased by about 10% over the year to $2.86 billion.
At the high end of the league besides the glitzy Cowboys is the most successful team in recent years, the New England Patriots. At the bottom: the lowly Detroit Lions and Buffalo Bills, the only two teams Forbes pegs as being worth less than $2 billion.
The Cowboys, owned by Jerry Jones, took in nearly $1 billion in revenue last year – the most of any U.S. team in any sport - to boost the team’s value. The team ranks first in NFL revenue from sales of suites and club seats and tops the league in sponsorship money and non-game events at its stadium.
Unlike the Cowboys, a business success despite struggling on the field, the Patriots, owned by Robert Kraft, have cashed in on being the team’s most successful in the league over the last few years having played in three straight Super Bowls and won three of the last five, including the most recent championship. The Patriots are considered by Forbes to be worth $4.1 billion.
New Stadiums Raise Values
The Los Angeles Rams, who are moving into a new stadium that will generate more revenue, including rent paid by another team, the Los Angeles Chargers, were among four teams that saw their value go up nearly 20%. The Chicago Bears increased in value by 19% to a sixth highest $3.54 billion. The Oakland Raiders, who are planning a move to Las Vegas, increased in value 20% to $2.9 billion for owner Mark Davis.
New rules aimed at making it easier for owners to buy teams also contributed to raising all the teams' values.
Forbes values teams based on what they would be expected to garner were they sold, though the Carolina Panthers, bought for $2.3 billion last year by David Tepper, are the only team that's been sold since 2014.
Top 10 Most Valuable
Dallas Cowboys, $5.5 billion
New England Patriots, $4.1 billion
New York Giants, $3.9 billion
Los Angeles Rams, $3.8 billion
San Francisco 49ers, $3.5 billion
Chicago Bears, $3.45 billion
Washington Redskins, $3.4 billion
New York Jets, $3.2 billion
Houston Texans, $3.1 billion
Philadelphia Eagles, $3.05 billion
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