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New York — Forbes says the Lions are the third-least valuable NFL franchise in its latest estimates, released Wednesday.

The Lions are worth $960 million, Forbes estimates. That’s an increase from last year’s $900 million valuation but not enough to stop Detroit from dropping from 28th to 30th out of 32 NFL teams.

Forbes also said the Dallas Cowboys are the first U.S. sports franchise to top $3 billion in value.

For the eighth straight year, the Cowboys are worth the most of all 32 NFL franchises, valued at $3.2 billion. Only soccer team Real Madrid at $3.4 billion is worth more among global franchises.

The average NFL franchise value for 2014 is $1.43 billion, the highest in the 17 years the business magazine has tracked professional football. That shows a 23 percent increase, the largest in one year since 1999.

New England is second in value at $2.6 billion, followed by Washington ($2.4 billion) and the New York Giants ($2.1 billion).

At the bottom are Buffalo, worth $935 million and for sale after owner and Grosse Pointe Shores businessman Ralph Wilson’s death, and St. Louis at $930 million.

NFL team values

Rank

Team

Value

1-year value change (%)

1

Dallas Cowboys

$3.2 Billion

39

2

New England Patriots

$2.6B

44

3

Washington Redskins

$2.4B

41

4

New York Giants

$2.1B

35

5

Houston Texans

$1.85B

28

6

New York Jets

$1.8B

30

7

Philadelphia Eagles

$1.75B

33

8

Chicago Bears

$1.7B

36

9

San Francisco 49ers

$1.6B

31

10

Baltimore Ravens

$1.5B

22

11

Denver Broncos

$1.45B

25

12

Indianapolis Colts

$1.4B

17

13

Green Bay Packers

$1.375B

16

14

Pittsburgh Steelers

$1.35B

21

15

Seattle Seahawks

$1.33B

23

16

Miami Dolphins

$1.3B

21

17

Carolina Panthers

$1.25B

18

18

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

$1.225B

15

19

Tennessee Titans

$1.16B

10

20

Minnesota Vikings

$1.15B

14

21

Atlanta Falcons

$1.125B

21

22

Cleveland Browns

$1.12B

11

23

New Orleans Saints

$1.11B

11

24

Kansas City Chiefs

$1.1B

9

25

Arizona Cardinals

$1B

4

26

San Diego Chargers

$995 Million

5

27

Cincinnati Bengals

$990M

7

28

Oakland Raiders

$970M

18

29

Jacksonville Jaguars

$965M

15

30

Detroit Lions

$960M

7

31

Buffalo Bills

$935M

7

32

St. Louis Rams

$930M

6

Source: Forbes.com

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