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Forbes lists 19 NFL owners as worth a billion with a B

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There’s a reason NFL owners can pay Roger Goodell more than $1 million each to be their pinata.

Because for the majority of them, a million bucks is literally pocket change.

The latest list by Forbes Magazine of the richest of the rich shows that 19 NFL owners get to start their bios with “comma, billionaire.”

Of course, their lists are based on estimates of worth, both of franchises and individuals, so take this all with a grain of salt, because everybody involved in the NFL is insanely wealthy. But here’s how they rank them, to give us all a point of reference when it’s time for righteous indignation about public money going to new stadium projects and the like.

Topping the list is Seahawks owner Paul Allen ($17.5 billion), who started some company called Microsoft with that Gates fella.

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is second at $12 billion, which is why he was able to renovate Sun Life Stadium with some of his own money.

Up next is Rams owner Stan Kroenke ($7.7 billion), which helps explain why he was able to pull off the largest land snatch this side of Hedley Lamarr to move his team to Los Angeles. Since he has the means, he also owns the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets and two soccer teams, the MLS Colorado Rapids and England’s Arsenal.

Jaguars owner Shahid Khan ($5.9 billion) and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones ($5 billion) round out the top five.

Robert Kraft (Patriots, $4.9 billion), Terry Pegula (Bills, $4 billion), Joan Tisch (Giants, $3.3 billion), Bob McNair (Texans, $3.3 billion), Steve Bisciotti (Ravens, $3 billion), Arthur Blank (Falcons $2.6 billion), Jim Irsay (Colts, $2.3 billion), Jimmy Haslam (Browns, $2.3 billion), Tom Benson (Saints, $2.2 billion), Dan Snyder (Washington, $2.2 billion), Denise York (49ers, $1.9 billion), Jeff Lurie (Eagles, $1.8 billion), Dean Spanos (Chargers, $1.7 billion) and Martha Ford (Lions, $1.3 billion) also made the list.

That’s not to say the other NFL owners are struggling, as the list doesn’t include family holdings, which excludes most of the rest of them, since the average franchise is worth an estimated $2 billion.

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52 Responses to “Forbes lists 19 NFL owners as worth a billion with a B”
  1. bleedgreen says: Mar 2, 2016 8:26 AM

    How is Jeff Lurie worth that much? He made some movies and I’m sure you can stay rich with that, but jeez. $1.8B?!

  2. ausernamethatisavailable says: Mar 2, 2016 8:32 AM

    I’m surprised any are not billionaires.

  3. petedutcherjr says: Mar 2, 2016 8:34 AM

    Just couldn’t mention the Glazers, who are worth more than most of them. Anything to avoid Bucs coverage.

    Seven days since anything was reported here on them. Shameful.

  4. igotgamenj says: Mar 2, 2016 8:46 AM

    So Miami gives Vernon the transition tag for 12.7 million but could have locked him up for 3 million more. Looks like Ross makes that in interest in about an hour.

  5. renocarolina says: Mar 2, 2016 8:50 AM

    And headlines this offseason:

    ” are raising ticket prices again for straight years.

    Would be interesting to know how many of those teams had cap space roll over to this year?

  6. handsatlanta says: Mar 2, 2016 8:52 AM

    Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is second at $12 billion, which is why he was able to renovate Sun Life Stadium with some of his own money.

    Not exactly his own money. Ticket prices for 2016 are up 25%; parking prices up 50%.

    They deserve that raise after going 6-10, don’t you think?

  7. renocarolina says: Mar 2, 2016 8:52 AM

    hmm I guess some symbols mess up reply, can’t edit so here it is with () instead.

    And headlines this offseason:

    ” (insert team name) are raising ticket prices again for (insert #) straight years.”

  8. collectordude says: Mar 2, 2016 9:00 AM

    Some may be worth over a billion dollars but have zero football sense.

  9. ontherocks1964 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:09 AM

    People still say “billion with a b”?

  10. kane337 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:12 AM

    Dean Spanos has all of that worth and can’t build his own friggin stadium? C’mon man!

  11. nhpats says: Mar 2, 2016 9:16 AM

    And yet all these guys, with the exception of Robert Kraft, expect taxpayers to foot the bill for the construction of their team’s stadiums

  12. beedubyatoo says: Mar 2, 2016 9:18 AM

    Does any NFL football fan really care?

  13. 2dat says: Mar 2, 2016 9:27 AM

    Most are Loaded with money, but have ZERO class

  14. schmitty2 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:30 AM

    9 dollar beers, 30 dollars for parking, 60+ bucks for nosebleed seats= billionaire owners

  15. conormacleod says: Mar 2, 2016 9:31 AM

    And some guy running for President says he is worth $10 billion. I’m sure all of these people are concerned about you and I.

  16. dsigrey says: Mar 2, 2016 9:44 AM

    They shouldn’t even ask for tax payers money for new stadiums.

  17. maestro1899 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:46 AM

    Every NFL franchise is worth well over $1 BILLION.

    Why is this even a story, with an “S”?

  18. brianav036 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:48 AM

    I would think that they would all be billionaires. The franchises themselves are worth well over a billion dollars.

  19. j0esixpack says: Mar 2, 2016 9:50 AM

    It’s amazing these guys can put food on their tables

    Sign me up as a taxpayer to do my part to build them stadiums for 8 home games a year (well, I guess Kraft paid for his himself)

    Hey – it’s not like the NFL and their owners are dishonest. They’d never do anything like, say, try to embezzle $120 million that belonged to the NFLPA

    Nah – we can trust them!

  20. j0esixpack says: Mar 2, 2016 9:52 AM

    You gotta love Jim Irsay’s success story however

    He’s a self made man, inheriting $2.2 billion from his father – and through hard work and intelligence he’s toiled non-stop to turn that into $2.3 billion

    True story

  21. jjb0811 says: Mar 2, 2016 9:53 AM

    Shad is matching Jacksonville 50/50 for all renovations to the stadium. And has plans to build a huge waterfront community next to the stadium. Funny how all that chatter about moving from Jacksonville left when we got the best owner.

  22. nicofthenorthstar says: Mar 2, 2016 9:53 AM

    Which is why it’s such a wonderful thing that local/state governments funnel billions of dollars into the league’s coffers. Clearly the billionaires could never afford to build their own stadiums aka money factories.

  23. milwaukeeguy says: Mar 2, 2016 9:55 AM

    American aristocracy getting public money to subsidize their family-owned operations along with consistent increases in parking and ticket prices but the NFL thinks the Packers’ ownership arrangement is so wrong that it’s literally outlawed. Bread and circus indeed.

  24. jonathankrobinson424 says: Mar 2, 2016 10:01 AM

    ……..hey buddy (average fan), you got any loose change you can spare? (NFL Owner)

  25. bubbahotepp says: Mar 2, 2016 10:04 AM

    And taxpayers get to fund most of their stadiums while they pay for seat licenses and higher ticket prices. Somewhere, P.T. Burnum is smiling.

  26. laces out says: Mar 2, 2016 10:06 AM

    schmitty2 says:
    Mar 2, 2016 9:30 AM

    9 dollar beers, 30 dollars for parking, 60+ bucks for nosebleed seats= billionaire owners
    —————————
    unfortunately, we suckers keep paying that no questions asked so it continues

  27. billswillnevermove says: Mar 2, 2016 10:08 AM

    nhpats says:
    Mar 2, 2016 9:16 AM

    And yet all these guys, with the exception of Robert Kraft, expect taxpayers to foot the bill for the construction of their team’s stadiums
    __________________________________
    Yes, because Kraft is such an honest guy isn’t he?

  28. finchy74 says: Mar 2, 2016 10:26 AM

    Don’t forget the Packer owners. That piece of toilet paper up on their walls has made them all billionaires.

  29. jag1959 says: Mar 2, 2016 10:40 AM

    nhpats says:
    Mar 2, 2016 9:16 AM
    And yet all these guys, with the exception of Robert Kraft, expect taxpayers to foot the bill for the construction of their team’s stadiums
    _________________

    That should read “…with the exception of Robert Kraft, Mara/Tisch and Woody Johnson…”
    MetLife was built without the use of ANY public money, not even for infrastructure

  30. mister305miami says: Mar 2, 2016 10:45 AM

    Where do they get this information ?? Took me 3 seconds to see that Ross is 6billion not 12.

  31. yooperman says: Mar 2, 2016 10:55 AM

    And yet they have to STEAL a few million from their employees. A billion doesn’t go as far as it used to.

  32. granadafan says: Mar 2, 2016 11:07 AM

    Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is second at $12 billion, which is why he was able to renovate Sun Life Stadium with some of his own money.

    Don’t give Ross any credit. He was trying to ramrod the taxpayers into giving him a free stadium. Too bad for this greedy A-hole the taxpayers told him to take a hike after already getting screwed over by the Marlins.

    Dean Spanos (Chargers, $1.7 billion)

    The moral of the story here is that there is absolutely ZERO reason for the public to pay for the workplace of ANY company or business. Build your own damned stadium, Dean, or sell the team. We don’t want you here in LA.

  33. joec44 says: Mar 2, 2016 11:09 AM

    Why do people think that these ‘billionaires’ have a billion or two just lying around. It’s mostly paper wealth. The reason the Rams are in LA is because the worth of that team will go up in a huge way and every other teams value will go up as well. If your house value goes up $50,000 do YOU have another $50k lying around? No.

    And most fans cry about some tax money going to a stadium, but will gladly take all of the generated funds a team generates. People just don’t get it…….sad

  34. joenash72 says: Mar 2, 2016 11:17 AM

    As a Seahawks fan, I vote to eliminate the Salary Cap😉

    We could then pay Beastmode enough to entice him to play another year….

  35. fmckenney says: Mar 2, 2016 11:20 AM

    Paul Allens first love is basketball…he bought the Seahawks as a community gesture after the team had been owned by that half-wit Ken Behring, after Behring tried unsuccessfully tried to move the team to California. He has been an extraordinary owner, we are all very fortunate to have had his involvement with the team.

  36. kamthechancellor says: Mar 2, 2016 11:26 AM

    Sure is a lot of whining about rich owners on this thread. How about this: get out of your mom’s basement and get a job. You’d have money in your wallet and less time to annoy us with your incessant complaining and trolling.

  37. boothisman says: Mar 2, 2016 11:30 AM

    Steelers don’t have a billionaire owner, nor a billionaire’s ego to contend with. Must be why we have the most rings. :)

  38. granadafan says: Mar 2, 2016 11:32 AM

    This story just shows that there is that there is absolutely no reason for the public to pay for the workplace of ANY company or business.

    Dean Spanos can afford to build his own stadium or sell the team. We don’t want him here in LA. There are no demographics of Chargers fans in LA, maybe a handful at best.

  39. cromartiesbirthcontrol says: Mar 2, 2016 11:57 AM

    jag1959 says:
    Mar 2, 2016 10:40 AM
    nhpats says:
    Mar 2, 2016 9:16 AM
    And yet all these guys, with the exception of Robert Kraft, expect taxpayers to foot the bill for the construction of their team’s stadiums
    _________________

    That should read “…with the exception of Robert Kraft, Mara/Tisch and Woody Johnson…”
    MetLife was built without the use of ANY public money, not even for infrastructure
    ___________________

    Except that the Giants and Jets were given the land for the stadium and the parking lots by New Jerseys fine Governor. Land in NJ runs about $300,000/acre, so built with all private funding my ass.

  40. BigVinnyInJax says: Mar 2, 2016 12:11 PM

    I don’t know the history of the others, so I won’t comment, but Khan is a good man who earned every penny he has. Good for him.

  41. stlouisfan says: Mar 2, 2016 12:15 PM

    They will keep getting richer and richer as long as we pay attention and foot the bill. Go 16-0 or 0-16 , doesn’t matter just keep the money coming. We are entering the worst era of football to date. The NFL is nearing its peak. The game is getting close to the XFL.

  42. jpaq68 says: Mar 2, 2016 12:24 PM

    Shad Khan’s moustache has to be worth at least a billion dollars

  43. fanofpft says: Mar 2, 2016 12:27 PM

    Same squabbling every time over funding stadiums.

    Once again after the NY/Dal deals the CBA MANDATES that taxpayers money be used.

  44. tremoluxman says: Mar 2, 2016 12:27 PM

    I have a serious question. When you buy an NFL franchise, what physical, tangible things come with it? The team training facilities, practice field? What portion of the home stadium is yours with the purchase? Etc.?

    Always been curious about this.

  45. gofor2with3pointlead says: Mar 2, 2016 1:28 PM

    Yes, people still say billion with a B. Until they start saying trillion with a T. Once we begin to discus numbers with 15 zeros, few people can comprehend. To accumulate personal wealth that large isn’t in and of itself wrong, but neither is it completely benign. The scale is incomprehensible. Fity cent is broke.

  46. djscottyb says: Mar 2, 2016 2:10 PM

    Yet, none of these guys will be as broke as Kanye.

  47. djscottyb says: Mar 2, 2016 2:20 PM

    Don’t blame Ross for those ticket prices.
    He’s been clueless as an owner, but he didn’t earn his “Billions with a B” by not being astute business man. He’s going to recoup on his $350 million investment somehow.

    With the city/county/state help they would have helped buffer the ticket prices and received a return on investment thru taxes and special event at the stadium including a SuperBowl.

    The blame falls on politicians at the state and local levels, especially after the badly funded Marlins Park – of which the county chipped in $500 MILLION with an M! (lol)
    The county didn’t have the money so they sold bonds on Wall St. and the payments don’t come due til 2026. After paying them off by 2048, the total cost will total with interest:
    $2.4 Billion (with that pesky B again!)

    Yeah, blame Ross – meanwhile the taxpayers are paying for Miami’s least favorite pro team to have the most expensive stadium ever built.

  48. fishyinalittledishy says: Mar 2, 2016 2:22 PM

    This billionaire stuff is not new because everything is relative. Way back in the day before most of you were born for example in the 1700’s that’s 18th century to some, industrialists were leaving tens of millions of dollars to university’s, hospitals etc. Unbelievable amounts of wonga for the day. What’s 20 mill in 1700’s worth now.

  49. mjd08501 says: Mar 2, 2016 3:38 PM

    5 of the top 7 owners are in the AFC East or NFC West. Probably means nothing but still a weird coincidence nonetheless

  50. buckyhamm says: Mar 2, 2016 3:50 PM

    If you own an NFL team you’re worth a Billion dollars ! And Dean Spanos is a cheap bum !

  51. bsizemore68 says: Mar 2, 2016 4:25 PM

    If you could get your neighbors to chip in for an swimming pool for your back yard so you would not be burden with spending your money, then you know how they think, always play with house money. Greed, why not, don’t care about the fans’, sure, why not…that is why they are rich. Don’t buy there product…watch the tube. bill

  52. seahawkgary says: Mar 2, 2016 11:34 PM

    Fools vote to pay for their welfare, by way of building these guys their business buildings, why?

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