Considering the state of the Dolphins right now, a ranking of 16th isn't bad. Though, the ranking was awarded byForbes.com on a list of the most valuable NFL teams
. Forbes estimates that the Dolphins are worth $1.01 billion. Slightly less than the $1.04 billion average.
Forbes says the Dolphins brought in $247 million in revenue last year, or about $17 per person living in Broward and Miami-Dade.
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The Dolphins took two key steps to improve their finances during the off-season. The team sold the naming rights to their stadium to insurer Sun Life for $4 million a year (an additional $1.5 million a year from the deal is paid to charities), replacing the temporary, soft-dollar deal it had with Jimmy Buffett's Land Shark Lager. More importantly, the Dolphins refinanced $235 million of stadium debt in a deal that includes a $159 million letter of credit that backs taxable municipal bonds sold through a government conduit but for which the stadium corporation is responsible. The deal, arranged by Goldman Sachs, contains a credit reserve that is significantly bigger than it otherwise would have been to account for the possibility of a work stoppage in 2011.
As in most things in the AFC east right now, the Dolphins are ranked below their two fiercest rivals. The Patriots are ranked third with an estimated value of $1.4 billion, while the Jets come in sixth overall with an estimated value of $1.1 billion. At least we always do better than the Buffalo Bills. They came in at 28th, with an estimated value of $799 million.
In Florida, the Fins are beat out by the Bucaneers who are ranked at 13th, and make an estimated $34 "per fan." However, the Jacksonville Jaguars are ranked at the least valuable franchise in the NFL with $725 million and a ranking of 32nd.