America’s Team remains America’s most valuable football team — by well over 100 yards.
Forbes reported August 5 that the Dallas Cowboys are worth $6.5 billion, up 14 percent from last year. That $800 million increase came despite the pandemic-disrupted 2020 season.
The New England Patriots rank second in the value category, at $5 billion. The Cowboys have appeared atop the Forbes list for 15 years.
According to Forbes, the Cowboys generate the most revenue ($800 million) and operating income ($280.4 million) of any NFL team. This, despite no Super Bowl victories since 1995 and a spotty playoff record since then.
But then, there's Jerry Jones.
“Owner Jerry Jones is the league’s consummate salesman, and the team’s more than $200 million in combined sponsorship and advertising revenue is easily tops in the NFL,” Forbes says.
Jones derives much of his immense fortune from the Cowboys. Forbes estimates his net worth at $8.8 billion, making him the 291st richest person in the U.S. as of August 9.
Among the NFL’s 32 teams, Texas’ other franchise — the Houston Texans — ranks 11th, with a value of $3.7 billion. That’s up 12 percent from 2020. The team posted an operating loss of $20.2 million last year, according to Forbes.
And let’s not overlook the Buffalo Bills. The team, said to be weighing (a highly unlikely) move to Austin, ranks last in the NFL in terms of its worth. Forbes pegs the team’s value at $2.27 billion, up from 11 percent last year. The Bills notched an operating loss of $17.6 million in 2020.
The Bills’ owners have threatened to move the franchise to Austin as they pursue nearly $1.5 billion in public funding for a new stadium. Football observers believe the threat is merely a bargaining chip in the stadium negotiations.
A stadium deal is far more realistic than a relocation to Austin. Why? Jones almost certainly would wield his influence in the NFL to block the Bills’ move to Austin — a move that would give Texas a third pro football team and dilute the fan bases of the Cowboys and Texans.