The NFL has some of the most valuable entities, but not all are equally profitable. Obviously, this changes year to year, but for an NFL franchise to be considered profitable, it must have a positive operating income.
Operating income is defined as profit generated from operations after deducting operating expenses.
Based on data available for the 2020 NFL season, the following franchises are the most profitable in the NFL going into the 2021 season.
Top 5 Profitable NFL franchises for 2021
#1 - Dallas Cowboys
Operating Income: 280 Million USD
The Dallas Cowboys are not just the most valuable NFL franchise, they remain the most profitable as well. While the Dallas Cowboys may not have reached the Super Bowl recently, in terms of valuation and profitability, they have no peers.
Their total valuation is 6.5 billion USD, which puts them not just at the top of the NFL, but across global sports.
#2 - New England Patriots
Operating Income: 142 Million USD
The New England Patriots may have lost Tom Brady to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and have lost the sheen of the Super Bowl years. But during the dynasty they created, they created legions of fans and became one of the most popular teams around the world.
It shows in their operating income; the only one apart from the Cowboys to exceed 100 million USD last year.
#3 - Jacksonville Jaguars
Operating Income: 69 Million USD
The Jacksonville Jaguars have not had the greatest of successes on the football field in the last few seasons. They were hoping for a fresh start with Urban Meyer, but that has not quite materialized. But that has not stopped them from being profitable. Coming into this season, they had quite a decent operating income.
#4 - Los Angeles Rams
Operating Income: 37 Million USD
The Los Angeles Rams are looking to this year be genuine Super Bowl contenders. They arguably have the best defense in the league and they have Matthew Stafford who is playing at MVP caliber level. Off the field has not been too shabby for them either, with their operating income coming in at 37 million USD in 2020.
#5 - Washington Football Team
Operating Income: 25 Million USD
The Washington Football Team is in the midst of an epic controversy that has already ensnared Jon Gruden. On the field, their performances have been middling. Off the field, though, they have remained highly profitable, counting themselves among the top 5 most profitable NFL franchises of 2020.