The Cowboys aren't America's Team. They're the World's Team.
Even though Jerry Jones' franchise is coming off a four-win season, even though his quarterback is 36 and has the most fragile collarbone in all of sports, even though he hasn't won a Super Bowl in more than 20 years, Jones' Cowboys topped Forbes' list of the most valuable sports teams of 2016 with a $4 billion valuation (up 25 percent). It's the first time a non-soccer team has topped Forbes' annual list since it started compiling the lists back in 2011.
According to Forbes, the average NFL team is valued at almost $2 billion. So, the Cowboys doubled the average NFL franchise. They also nearly doubled the average value of the top-50 teams in the world, $2.2 billion.
In Forbes' explanation for the Cowboys' ascent to the top of the list, it cited the Cowboys' $270 million operating profit in 2014, $125 million premium seat revenue, and $120 million sponsorship revenue. Those last two numbers led the league last year while the first led the world.
Not to mention the Cowboys' new practice facility, which cost more money to build than it did to construct AT&T Stadium, arguably the greatest stadium on the planet. That $1.5 billion facility, located in Frisco, Texas, features a 16-story hotel, an event center, a members-only club, practice fields, restaurants and retail stores, office space and an underground parking garage, and a 12,000-seat indoor stadium.
Behind the Cowboys on Forbes' list were two Spanish soccer clubs in Real Madrid and Barcelona, with the New York Yankees and Manchester United rounding out the top-five. Real Madrid and Manchester United had topped the past five lists.
In all, 27 NFL teams made the top-50 list, compared to just 20 last year. The Patriots finished sixth overall and second among NFL teams with a $3.2 billion valuation while the Redskins (eighth, $2.85 billion) and Giants (ninth, $2.8 billion) also placed in the top-10.