We've long heard that despite the misery of a 2-14 season, business is great for the Houston Texans.
The latest Forbes list of the most valuable franchises in the world bolsters that claim. The Texans rank 12th among professional sports franchises worldwide at $1.45 billion. They rank fifth among NFL teams behind Dallas, New England, Washington and the New York Giants.
The top three most valuable franchises are all soccer teams: Real Madrid ($3.44 billion), Barcelona ($3.2 billion) and Manchester United ($2.81 billion). Real Madrid and Barcelona are both owned by club members, while the Glazer family, which also owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, owns Manchester United.
American sports first arrive at No. 4 with the New York Yankees, a franchise worth $2.5 billion. The Dallas Cowboys (No. 5) are worth $2.3 billion, the Los Angeles Dodgers are worth $2 billion, soccer team Bayern Munich is worth $1.85 billion and NFL teams round out the bottom of the top 10.
No. 8 is New England ($1.8 billion), No. 9 is Washington ($1.7 billion) and No. 10 is the New York Giants ($1.55 billion).
What's interesting about the most valuable NFL teams is the correlation of winning to value. Or lackthereof as it were.
The Cowboys haven't even been to the playoffs since 2009 and have gone 2-7 in the postseason since their 1995 Super Bowl win. The New England Patriots are one of the most successful NFL franchises in the modern era, and the New York Giants have two Super Bowl championships since 2007. But then you have Washington, a team with a storied history that hasn't been out of the divisional round in the past 22 seasons and won just three games last season.