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National Football League (NFL) - Statistics & Facts

The National Football League (NFL) is a professional football league in the United States. The league was founded in 1920 as the American Professional Football Association and played its inaugural season with eleven teams. Nowadays, the NFL comprises 32 teams spread out over two conferences, the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC), that each consist of four divisions.

League revenues

The NFL as a whole has increased its revenue every year for almost 20 years now, from around six billion U.S. dollars in 2004 to more than 15 billion U.S. dollars in 2019. The league experienced a drop in revenue for the first time in 2020, no doubt due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on professional sports leagues across the world. However, when comparing the NFL's revenue to other big leagues in North America, football always comes out on top. The revenue of Major League Baseball (MLB) was at 3.66 billion U.S. dollars in 2020, while the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Hockey League (NHL) generated around 7.92 and 4.37 billion U.S. dollars in annual revenue respectively. The Dallas Cowboys are the highest-grossing team in the league, generating around 800 million U.S. dollars in revenue, with the New England Patriots, the Los Angeles Rams, the Houston Texans, and the Las Vegas Raiders rounding out the top five in terms of revenue in 2020.

NFL franchises

In 2021, the Dallas Cowboys were also the most valuable franchise in the NFL, with a value of 6.5 billion U.S. dollars. The Buffalo Bills were estimated as being the least valuable, with a worth of 2.27 billion U.S. dollars. League-wide, NFL franchises were worth around 3.05 billion U.S. dollars on average in 2020, demonstrating significant growth in overall team values since the turn of the century. Compared to the NBA, MLB, and the NHL, NFL franchises are generally estimated to be the most valuable.

Football fans

The NFL is also the professional sports league with the highest average per game attendance, drawing more than 66 thousand average spectators per game and more than 16 million in total throughout the 2019 season. While this figure predictably dropped during the COVID-hit 2020 season, total regular season attendance rose to higher than pre-pandemic levels in the 2021 season. The passion for NFL displayed by its fans can be further explored in the Statista Global Consumer Survey's Playbook on NFL Fans 2022.

The Super Bowl

The NFL's annual championship game, the Super Bowl, is one of the biggest single-day sports events in the world, drawing high television ratings each year and generating several billion U.S. dollars in consumer spending. The Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots are the joint most successful teams of all time at the Super Bowl, having both lifted the coveted Vince Lombardi Trophy a total of six times each.

Interesting statistics

In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 51 most important statistics relating to "National Football League (NFL)".


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