Fresh off winning the franchise's second Super Bowl title, the Ravens were ranked 19th on Forbes' annual list of the world's most valuable sports franchises.
Owner Steve Bisciotti's team was valued at $1.157 billion and finished 11th among NFL organizations. Last year, the Ravens finished 18th in the overall rankings with a value of $1.09 billion. Forbes wrote that the Ravens' stadium naming rights deal with M&T Bank is worth $75 million over 15 years.
European soccer clubs occupied the top three spots in this year's rankings. Real Madrid topped the 50-team list with a value of $3.3 billion. Manchester United, which ranked No.1 last year, finished second at $3.17 billion, while Barcelona ($2.6 billlion) rounded out the top three.
Baseball's New York Yankees, one of the Orioles' chief rivals in the American League East, were named the most valuable U.S. sports team at $2.3 billion. They finished fourth in the rankings.
Thirty of the 50 teams on the list were NFL organizations as only the St. Louis Rams and the Jacksonville Jaguars didn't make the rankings. At No. 5 overall, the Dallas Cowboys ($2.1 billion) were the highest ranked NFL organization.
The other NFL teams ranked ahead of the Ravens were: No. 6 New England Patriots ($1.635 billion), No. 8 Washington Redskins ($1.6 billion), No. 9 New York Giants ($1.468 billion), No. 13 Houston Texans ($1.305 billion), No. 14 New York Jets ($1.284 billion), No. 15 Philadelphia Eagles ($1.26 billion), No. 16 Chicago Bears ($1.19 billion), No. 17 San Francisco 49ers ($1.175 billion) and No. 18 Green Bay Packers ($1.161 billion).
Forbes has been valuing teams in the major professional sports leagues since 1998. According to the magazine, the top 50 list is based on the valuations it has done for the NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB, soccer, NASCAR and Formula One over the past year.
The magazine reported that the average team in the top 50 is worth $1.24 billion, up 16 percent over last year. It also wrote that there are 33 teams worth $1 billion compared to 24 last year, and while there weren’t any teams worth $2 billion two years ago, there are now five.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun