For the megarich, ownership of a sports franchise is the ultimate trophy — and an NFL team is the biggest cap feather of them all. Some of the richest NFL team owners inherited their franchises as part of massive hand-me-down fortunes. Other owners bought their teams after amassing enormous wealth on their own. In a few rare cases, the family fortune is actually based on ownership of the team. Team owners are ranked from least to most wealth, primarily based on data from Forbes. All the owners on this list are rich — sometimes even richer than the teams they own.
Last updated: Jan. 16, 2020Mark Davis, Oakland Raiders: $500 Million Net WorthOwner since: 2011How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2.9 billion
Legendary Raiders owner Al Davis bought the team for $180,000 in 1966 and commanded every aspect of the franchise. A maverick, a visionary and a champion of civil rights, he turned the Raiders into one of the most successful and popular teams in America. He hired the NFL’s first African-American head coach and the first woman chief executive, and he refused to let his team play in any city where black and white players had to stay in separate hotels. When he died in 2011, his son, Mark Davis, took over the reins. Not much is known about the younger Davis — who, unlike his dynamic and outspoken father, avoids the limelight — but Business Insider estimates his fortune at $500 million.Pat Bowlen Trust, Denver Broncos: $1 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1984How much they purchased the team for: $78 millionHow much the team is worth: $3 billion
Iconic Broncos owner Pat Bowlen was a successful lawyer and real estate developer before he bought the Broncos in 1984. During his 35-year tenure, Denver won 60% of its games, a winning percentage topped only by the Patriots. When Bowlen died at the age of 75 in June 2019, Celebrity Net Worth estimated his net worth at $1 billion. The Broncos are now held in a trust in his name until new ownership is decided.Steve Tisch, New York Giants: $1.1 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2005How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $3.9 billion
Steve Tisch, whose net worth is estimated at $1.1 billion, owns half of the New York Giants — John Mara, whose net worth is unknown, owns the other half. In 2005, he took over a 50% stake in the Giants, which his father, Bob Tisch, purchased for $75 million in 1991 — the entire team sold for $150 million. The elder Tisch co-founded the financial conglomerate Loews Corp. In 1946, and when he died in 2005, Steve Tish became half-owner of the No. 3 most valuable team in the NFL. His mother Joan was the largest Loews shareholder, and when she died in 2017, Steve Tisch inherited her fortune.Virginia Halas McCaskey and Family, Chicago Bears: $1.3 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1920How much they purchased the team for: $100How much the team is worth: $3.5 billion
Few teams have a longer and prouder lineage than the Chicago Bears, whose 1,000-game history began in 1920 — the franchise is one of only two remaining charter members of the National Football League. That year, George Halas bought the team for $100 — three years before his daughter Virginia was born in 1923. The oldest owner in the NFL, Virginia Halas McCaskey — whose net worth Forbes estimated at $1.3 billion in 2015 — is among the only owners whose family fortune comes directly from owning a team, as opposed to buying a team after becoming independently wealthy.Zygmunt Wilf, Minnesota Vikings: $1.3 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2005How much they purchased the team for: $600 millionHow much the team is worth: $2.7 billion
Zygmunt “Zygi” Wilf is a German immigrant and the son of Polish-Jewish Holocaust survivors. His father and uncle formed a real estate company, which Hunt joined after working as a lawyer. After assuming control of the firm, he dramatically expanded the company’s portfolio, which now includes tens of thousands of apartments and vast commercial holdings. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he has a fortune of $1.3 billion.Martha Firestone Ford, Detroit Lions: $1.4 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2014How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2 billion
Few people have benefited more directly from America’s love for automobiles than Martha Firestone Ford — it’s right there in her name. She’s the widow of William C. Ford, who is the grandson of Henry Ford. Her grandparents on her father’s side founded Firestone Tire and Rubber. Her late husband bought — fittingly, given the family’s lineage — the Detroit Lions in 1964 for $4.5 million. When he died in 2014, Martha Firestone Ford inherited the team. Her net worth is estimated at $1.4 billion.Dan Snyder, Washington Redskins: $2.6 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1999How much they purchased the team for: $750 millionHow much the team is worth: $3.4 billion
Dan Snyder made his money through his marketing firm Snyder Communications, which he formed after dropping out of college. He took the company public in 1996 and then sold it to a French company in 2000 — the year after he bought the Redskins — for $2.1 billion. Today, Snyder’s net worth today is estimated at $2.6 billion.
Get Your Tickets: Most and Least Expensive Stadiums for Fans To Watch a Football GameJeffrey Lurie, Philadelphia Eagles: $2.7 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1994How much they purchased the team for: $185 millionHow much the team is worth: $3.1 billion
Jeffrey Lurie, worth $2.7 billion, has owned the Eagles for more than a quarter-century. He took out a loan to buy the team, but he earned his fortune in the movie and media business. He became an executive in the General Cinema Corporation, founded by his grandfather in 1983, and later founded Chestnut Hill Productions.Jimmy and Dee Haslam, Cleveland Browns: $2.9 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2012How much they purchased the team for: $987 millionHow much the team is worth: $2.2 billion
In 1958, Jim Haslam bought a single gas station for $6,000. In the ensuing decades, he turned that into the truck stop empire that is Pilot Flying J, which has 750 locations in 44 states and did $29 billion in revenue in 2018. His son Jimmy, along with Jimmy’s wife, Dee, bought the Browns in 2012. Jimmy had served on the Pilot board of directors since he was a college student. Jim Haslam’s other son became the governor of Tennessee. Jimmy and Dee Haslam are worth $2.9 billion.Jim Irsay, Indianapolis Colts: $3 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1997How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2.7 billion
Robert Irsay bought the Colts for $14 million in 1972, and his son, Jim, spent his childhood with the team, living with them in the summer and traveling with them on the team bus as a kid. A college football player himself, Jim Irsay worked various jobs for the Colts for his entire life, including ticket sales and public relations. When the elder Irsay died in 1997, Jim Irsay became the sole owner and led Indy to a successful run that included a Super Bowl. He is now worth $3 billion.Gayle Benson, New Orleans Saints: $3.1 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2018How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2.3 billion
Gayle Benson inherited not just the Saints, but also the New Orleans Pelicans, when her husband, wealthy businessman Tom Benson, passed away in 2018. He purchased the team in 1985 for $70.2 million. Gayle Benson, Tom Benson’s third wife, is worth $3.1 billion, although she’s currently locked in a legal dispute over the assets of her late husband with his daughter and grandchildren, who claim Benson was mentally incompetent when distributing his fortune.Denise York and Family, San Francisco 49ers: $3.2 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2001How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $3.5 billion
The 49ers are the No. 5 most valuable team in the NFL, and the family of Denise York owns 90% of it. Her father, construction giant Edward DeBartolo Sr., bought the team for $13 million in 1977. The wife of pathologist John York, Denise gained control of the 49ers from her brother, who owned the team for 23 years before running into legal trouble. Her family is worth $3.2 billion.Janice McNair, Houston Texans: $4 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2018How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $3.1 billion
When Robert McNair died in 2018, his widow, Janice McNair, inherited her late husband’s 80% stake in the 32nd and most recent expansion team to enter the NFL. Robert paid $600 million for the Houston Texans after selling his power generator company Cogen Technologies to energy firm (and soon-to-be criminal enterprise) Enron in 1999. Janice McNair is worth $4 billion.Robert Wood Johnson IV, New York Jets: $4.2 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2000How much they purchased the team for: $635 millionHow much the team is worth: $3.2 billion
Despite being perennially and predictably terrible, the Jets are consistently one of the 10 most valuable teams in the NFL. Their owner, Woody Johnson, is worth $4.2 billion, according to a report by Bloomberg made shortly after President Donald Trump nominated him to serve as ambassador to Great Britain in 2017. Most of his money is tied up in the Jets, but he’s not a self-made man by any means. He’s the most famous of the heirs of Robert Wood Johnson, who founded Johnson & Johnson in 1886.Stephen Bisciotti, Baltimore Ravens: $4.6 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2004How much they purchased the team for: $600 millionHow much the team is worth: $2.8 billion
Stephen Bisciotti, who was raised by a single mother in Baltimore, started the staffing firm Allegis Group with his cousin Jim Davis — also now a billionaire — in a basement in 1983. Today, Bisciotti is worth $4.6 billion and owns the Ravens, who won a Super Bowl most recently in 2013. In 2018, Allegis Group did $13.4 billion in revenue.Glazer Family, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: $4.7 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2014How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2.2 billion
Malcolm Glazer was the patriarch of the Glazer family, and when he died in 2014, he left his descendants an empire built on the First Allied Corporation, which includes millions of square feet of retail shopping space. He also willed them the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which he bought in 1995 for $192 million. In 2015, Forbes estimated the Glazer family to be worth $4.7 billion.
Check Out the Champs: These Are the Most Incredible Active Sellout Streaks in SportsTerrence and Kim Pegula, Buffalo Bills: $4.9 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2014How much they purchased the team for: $1.4 billionHow much the team is worth: $1.9 billion
Fracking magnate Terrence Pegula, along with his wife, Kim, has an estimated net worth of $4.9 billion — but it wasn’t always that way. He founded his energy company, East Resources, in 1983 with a $7,500 loan. In 2010, he sold East Resources to the Royal Dutch Shell company for $4.7 billion. The undisputed monarchs of Buffalo sports, the Pegulas also own the Buffalo Sabres NHL team.Arthur Blank, Atlanta Falcons: $5.3 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2002How much they purchased the team for: $545 millionHow much the team is worth: $2.8 billion
If you’ve ever shopped at Home Depot, you’ve contributed to the $5.3 billion fortune of Arthur Blank. He co-founded the hardware giant with Bernie Marcus in 1978, became one of the richest people in the world, and stepped down as Home Depot co-chairman in 2001, a year before buying the Falcons. In 2012, he signed the Giving Pledge and vowed to donate the majority of his wealth to charity.Robert Kraft, New England Patriots: $6.9 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1994How much they purchased the team for: $172 millionHow much the team is worth: $4.1 billion
As a child, Robert Kraft sold newspapers outside of the former Braves Stadium in Boston. He began amassing his $6.9 billion fortune through a successful packaging and paper business and went on to assemble a sporting empire that now includes stakes in the UFC and the New England Revolution MLS soccer club. The jewel in his crown, however, is the six-time Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, which is — at this point, without a reasonable argument to the contrary — the greatest dynasty in football history.Stephen M. Ross, Miami Dolphins: $7.6 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2008How much they purchased the team for: $1.1 billionHow much the team is worth: $2.8 billion
Tax-attorney-turned-real-estate-developer Stephen M. Ross amassed a $7.6 billion fortune, in part, through his Related Co. Real estate firm. It’s responsible for $60 billion in property development and acquisition, including Manhattan’s Hudson Yards, which opened to the public in 2019. Ross also owns major stakes in a variety of restaurant chains, SoulCycle and Equinox Fitness.Shahid Khan, Jacksonville Jaguars: $8.5 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2011How much they purchased the team for: $770 millionHow much the team is worth: $2.3 billion
A self-made man now worth $8.5 billion, Shahid Khan is an engineer by trade. In 1980, he bought Flex-N-Gate, an auto parts supplier, from his former employer. He then put his engineering background to work in designing a hugely successful one-piece truck bumper, and in the ensuing decades, he grew his business to include 66 plants run by 24,000 employees.Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys: $8.6 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1989How much they purchased the team for: $150 millionHow much the team is worth: $5.5 billion
Jerry Jones, who is worth $8.6 billion, has both football and business baked into his DNA. He originally made his money as a successful oil wildcatter, but before that, he served as co-captain of the University of Arkansas’ 1964 national championship football team. Although they haven’t played in a Super Bowl since the 1995 season, the Cowboys are the most valuable team in not just the NFL, but in all sports, by a mile — the next-most-valuable team, the New York Yankees, is worth 20% less. All of this happened under the unprecedented stewardship of Jones, who revolutionized the modern NFL and changed how it’s marketed, sold, merchandized and contracted to the media.Stanley Kroenke, Los Angeles Rams: $9.7 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2010How much they purchased the team for: $750 millionHow much the team is worth: $3.8 billion
Real estate powerbroker Stanley Kroenke is worth $9.7 billion, much of which can be credited to the 30 million square feet of mostly commercial real estate in his bulging portfolio. Kroenke boasts a title coveted by the elite since the founding of America — landowner. He personally owns more than 2 million acres of ranches in the U.S. And Canada. A major sports mogul, his holdings are not limited to the Rams. He also owns the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets, the Colorado Rapids and the Arsenal soccer club in Britain.David Tepper, Carolina Panthers: $12 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 2018How much they purchased the team for: $2.3 billionHow much the team is worth: $2.4 billion
Widely hailed as the greatest hedge fund manager of his generation, David Tepper made a lot of money for his clients — and himself. His net worth is estimated to be $12 billion, making him the richest individual NFL owner by a longshot. A former Goldman Sachs junk bond manager, Tepper’s Appaloosa Management fund oversees $13 billion in assets — small potatoes compared to the $20 billion it managed at its peak.The Hunt Family, Kansas City Chiefs: $13.7 Billion Net WorthOwner since: 1974How much they purchased the team for: InheritedHow much the team is worth: $2.3 billion
The Hunt family is descended from American oil royalty. Their fortune can be traced to legendary wildcatter H.L. Hunt, who was once the richest man in the world and inspired the character J.R. Ewing on the TV show “Dallas.” He had 15 children, and his many descendants control a vast network of energy companies, resorts, and real estate and sports franchises, including the Kansas City Chiefs, which H.L. Hunt purchased for $25,000 in 1960. Hunt died in 1974. Hunt’s late son Lamar is believed to have named the Super Bowl. In 2016, Forbes estimated the Hunt clan’s net worth at $13.7 billion, making them one of the richest families in America.