The National Football League is a professional league for the game of American football which is held every year usually starting in early September and ending in December. The league consists of 32 teams from the National Football Conference and the American Football Conference with 16 teams from each conference. The league runs for 17 weeks with 256 games in total where each team plays 16 games. Let us have a quick glance at the net worth of the most popular sports league in the United States, the NFL in 2018.
To promote and organize the then held American football games and the player buying and bidding within the teams, the American Professional Football Conference was formed in August 1920 which was renamed as American Professional Football Association in September 1920. Jim Thorpe served as the first president of the league which consisted 14 teams.
The first game of the league was held on September 26, 1920, between Rock Island Independents and St. Paul Ideals in which Rock Island Independents emerged victoriously. The Akron Pros won the inaugural league, and Buffalo All-Americans won the second season. The American Professional Football Association was renamed as the National Football League on June 24, 1922.
In 1926, the league hosted 22 teams with Brooklyn Lions, Los Angeles Buccaneers, Hartford Blues, and Louisville Colonels being new entries. The 1927 season saw only 12 teams competing in the league as the board decided to eliminate financially weaker franchises. The league incorporated the playoff system in 1932 and dropped African Americans from the league for twelve years from 1934 to 1946 as the result of the de facto.
The American Football League was formed in 1960 which challenged the NFL regarding quality and competition. The two leagues started to merge in 1966, and the Super Bowl was introduced, an event in which the champion of the AFL and the NFL would play a game. The leagues got completely merged in 1970 which resulted in the formation of the National Football Conference and the American Football Conference.
Pete Rozelle, the former commissioner of the league from 1960 to 1989 was one of the key people who lifted the standards of the league and its attendance from 3 million to seventeen million. He also established the NFL Properties, the licensing wing of the league and the NFL Charities. From 1999 to 2001, the league hosted 31 teams and from 2002 to present 32 teams are competing in the league, 16 teams from the AFC and 16 teams from the NFC.
Awards & Achievements
The National Football League has an average attendance of 67,591 which is the highest average attendance for any professional sports league in the world. The league is the most popular sports event in the United States, and the Super Bowl is the most watched program on television in America. The average viewership of the NFL on TV is 14.9 million.
Net Worth & Earnings
In January 2018, Fox reached a 5-year broadcast deal for Thursday Night Football for $3 billion. ESPN has a deal worth $15.2 billion till 2021, DirecTV with $12 billion, CBS with $9 million and NBC with $8.55 billion till 2022. The league generated revenue of $12 billion in 2015 in which $7 billion came from TV deals alone. The sponsorship deals for the league is said to be worth $1.32 billion, and its net worth is estimated to be around $65 billion.
Though the league has its major viewership only within North America, its average attendance is more than the average attendance of any other sports league in the world which clearly speaks about the marketing and the presentation of the league and most importantly the passion for the game among the natives.