How Much Does It Cost To Start An NFL Franchise?

So you want to start an NFL franchise? You’re probably wondering how much it’s going to cost you. We’ve got the answer for you right here.


So, you want to start an NFL franchise. That’s a pretty lofty goal, but it’s not impossible. In fact, it’s becoming increasingly popular for billionaire business moguls to buy NFL teams. But how much does it cost to start an NFL franchise?

The answer is: it depends. There are a lot of factors that go into the cost of starting an NFL franchise, including the purchase price of an existing team, the construction or renovation of a stadium, and the costs of running a team on a day-to-day basis.

If you’re looking to start an NFL franchise from scratch, you’re looking at a pretty hefty investment. The purchase price of an existing NFL team can range from $1 billion to $2 billion. And that’s just for the team itself – you still need to build or buy a stadium, which can cost upwards of $1 billion as well.

Of course, you could always try to start your own football league, but that’s a whole other can of worms.

The Cost of an NFL Franchise

The cost of an NFL franchise can be quite high. You need to factor in the cost of the stadium, players, coaches, and other staff. The cost of an NFL franchise can range from a few million dollars to over a billion dollars. If you are thinking about starting an NFL franchise, you need to be prepared to spend a lot of money.

The Upfront Cost

The upfront cost of an NFL franchise is a minimum of $1 billion. This is the price that must be paid to the league in order to obtain a team. This fee is non-negotiable and is not dependent on the size or market of the city that the team will be located in. In addition to the upfront fee, each NFL team must also post a $100 million performance bond. The performance bond is designed to protect the league against any financial loss that might be incurred as a result of a team owner defaulting on their obligations to the league.

The Annual Cost

The annual cost of an NFL franchise is about $2.4 million, which includes the price of a team license, stadium lease and other related costs. The one-time cost of purchasing an NFL expansion franchise can range from $700 million to over $1 billion.

How the Cost of an NFL Franchise is Determined

The cost of an NFL franchise is not cheap. In fact, the franchise fee alone is $1 million. But that’s just the franchise fee. There are also other costs associated with starting an NFL franchise. These costs can range from the cost of stadium rental to player salaries. Let’s take a closer look at how the cost of an NFL franchise is determined.

The Purchase Price

The purchase price of an NFL franchise varies depending on a number of factors, including the market size of the city where the team will be located, the wealth of the owner, and the amount of debt the owner is willing to take on. The average price of an NFL franchise is $1.43 billion, but prices can range from $700 million (Buffalo Bills) to $4 billion (Dallas Cowboys).

The Operating Expenses

According to Forbes, the average NFL franchise is now worth $2.3 billion, a massive increase from the $1.4 billion average in 2013.

While it’s certainly true that the value of NFL franchises has been on the rise in recent years, the cost of actually purchasing an NFL franchise is still quite high. The most recent franchise to be sold, the Carolina Panthers, went for $2.2 billion in 2018.

However, it’s important to remember that the cost of purchasing an NFL franchise is only a small part of what it takes to operate a successful team. In fact, Forbes estimates that the average annual operating expense for an NFL team is now $377 million.

These operating expenses include everything from player salaries and benefits to stadium maintenance and security costs. With such high operating expenses, it’s no wonder that the majority of NFL teams are owned by wealthy individuals or corporations.


In conclusion, it costs a lot of money to start an NFL franchise. The price of a new stadium, the cost of player salaries, and the price of purchasing an existing franchise can all be very expensive. If you have the money and are passionate about football, starting your own NFL franchise can be a great way to get involved in the sport.

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