The Atlanta Falcons will soon have a stadium valued at about $1.2 billion, a nice sum for a franchise valued at around $933 million.
According to Forbes' annual list of the 50 most valuable franchises in sports, Atlanta clocks in at #42, just behind the San Diego Chargers and just ahead of the Cincinnati Bengals. In case you're wondering where the rest of the NFC South was, New Orleans comes in at #36, the Panthers at #31 and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at #30. Last year, Atlanta was at $837 million and valued at #44 overall, so hey, progress!
It's worth noting that this was—and I'm being generous—not a particularly valuable franchise in the pre-Arthur Blank years. The valuation of the franchise has had a few ups and downs along the way, but has generally trended upward since he assumed control in 2002. That new stadium will just add more value, of course, and the Falcons are reportedly footing $1 billion of that cost, with the remaining $200 million coming from a hotel tax.