10 Most Valuable NFL Teams in 2014

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

Acquiring a professional sports team is the latest investment strategy sweeping the market these days. Look no further than former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer purchasing the Los Angeles Clippers for $2 billion, or Donald Trump and Bon Jovi showing interest in the Buffalo Bills. The reason for this is simple: professional teams are huge moneymakers, especially in the National Football League.

Are you ready for some profits? The average NFL team is currently worth $1.43 billion, up 23 percent from last year, according to a new report from Forbes. That is the highest amount in the 17 years Forbes has tracked NFL team finances, and the biggest annual increase since 1999. For the 2013 season, the average NFL team raked in record revenue and operating income. In comparison, Major League Baseball teams have an average value of $811 million, followed by the National Basketball Association at $634 million.

“There is a widening wealth gap in the NFL due to the piles of cash big market teams generate from modern stadiums and the premium a buyer would be willing to pay for entry into the most elite U.S. sports league in a big city,” explains Mike Ozanian, staff writer, Forbes. “The value of the New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Chicago Bears, and San Francisco 49ers each rose by at least 30 percent during the past year.”

Let’s take a look at the ten most valuable NFL teams for 2014, according to Forbes. Values were calculated using enterprise value (equity plus debt) and multiples of revenue based on stadium economics.

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Rob Carr/Getty Images

10. Baltimore Ravens

Team value: $1.5 billion

2013 Revenue: $304 million

Operating income: $57 million

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

9. San Francisco 49ers

Team value: $1.6 billion

2013 Revenue: $270 million

Operating income: $25 million

Chicago Bears

David Banks/Getty Images

8. Chicago Bears

Team value: $1.7 billion

2013 Revenue: $309 million

Operating income: $57 million

Source: Mr.schultz / Wikimedia Commons

Mr.schultz / Wikimedia Commons

7. Philadelphia Eagles

Team value: $1.75 billion

2013 Revenue: $330 million

Operating income: $73 million

Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

6. New York Jets

Team value: $1.8 billion

2013 Revenue: $333 million

Operating income: $80 million

Houston Texans

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

5. Houston Texas

Team value: $1.85 billion

2013 Revenue: $339 million

Operating income: $103 million

Elsa/Getty Images

Elsa/Getty Images

4. New York Giants

Team value: $2.1 billion

2013 Revenue: $353 million

Operating income: $87 million

Rob Carr/Getty Images

Rob Carr/Getty Images

3. Washington Redskins

Team value: $2.4 billion

2013 Revenue: $395 million

Operating income: $143 million

Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Jim Rogash/Getty Images

2. New England Patriots

Team value: $2.6 billion

2013 Revenue: $428 million

Operating income: $147 million

Dallas Cowboys

Tom Pennington/Getty Images

1. Dallas Cowboys

Team value: $3.2 billion

2013 Revenue: $560 million

Operating income: $246 million

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