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INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 30: Fans walk outside the stadium before the NFC Championship Game between the Los Angeles Rams and the San Francisco 49ers at SoFi Stadium on January 30, 2022 in Inglewood, California. Meg Oliphant/Getty Images/AFP

The NFL is seeing unprecedented interest from advertisers – and most fans need only look at the name of their local stadium for proof. James Bisson takes an in-depth look at the boom in naming rights sponsorships across the NFL, which industries dominate the scene, and how the emergence of legal sports betting in the U.S. has impacted the sponsorship landscape.

AT&T. FedEx. Bank of America. Gillette.

These brands aren't just part of our everyday walk – they're also prominently featured on some of the most iconic sports venues in North America. And while there's plenty of fan resistance to adding corporate brands to NFL stadiums, there's no debating the fact that these agreements generate millions of dollars annually for the teams that sign them.

Here's a breakdown of how NFL stadium naming rights have taken off in recent years:

NFL Naming Rights Sponsorships by Industry, 2013-23

Naming Rights Sponsorship Trends

  • NFL stadium naming rights sponsorships have increased by a whopping 81% over the past 10 years.
  • Financial services (700%), insurance (100%) and auto industry sponsorships (50%) have seen the highest growth rates over that 10-year span.
  • Retail sponsorships have disappeared from the picture; there are no retail naming rights deals in place at NFL stadiums as of 2023.
  • 2020 saw the biggest year-over-year change in naming rights sponsorships over the previous decade, with the number of participating venues rising from 20 to 26 (a 30% jump).

Naming Rights Sponsorships by Team

TeamValue ($bn)*Stadium SponsorIndustry
Arizona Cardinals3.8State FarmInsurance
Atlanta Falcons4.7Mercedes-BenzAuto
Baltimore Ravens4.6M&T BankFinancial Services
Buffalo Bills3.7Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New YorkHealth Care
Carolina Panthers4.1Bank of AmericaFinancial Services
Chicago Bears6.3No SponsorN/A
Cincinnati Bengals3.5PaycorSoftware
Cleveland Browns4.6No SponsorN/A
Dallas Cowboys9.0AT&TTelecom
Denver Broncos5.1EmpowerFinancial Services
Detroit Lions3.6Ford Motor Co.Auto
Green Bay Packers4.6No SponsorN/A
Houston Texans5.5NRG EnergyUtility Services
Indianapolis Colts4.4Lucas OilManufacturing
Jacksonville Jaguars4.0EverBankFinancial Services
Kansas City Chiefs4.3GEHAInsurance
Las Vegas Raiders6.2AllegiantTravel
Los Angeles Chargers4.2SoFiFinancial Services
Los Angeles Rams6.9SoFiFinancial Services
Miami Dolphins5.7Hard RockRestaurant
Minnesota Vikings4.7U.S. BankFinancial Services
New England Patriots7.0Procter & GambleFast-Moving Consumer Goods
New Orleans Saints4.1Caesars EntertainmentHotels & Casinos
New York Giants6.8MetLifeInsurance
New York Jets6.1MetLifeInsurance
Philadelphia Eagles5.8Lincoln FinancialInsurance
Pitsburgh Steelers4.6AcrisureInsurance
San Francisco 49ers6.0Levi Strauss & Co.Fashion
Seattle Seahawks5.0CenturyLink, Inc.Telecom
Tampa Bay Buccaneers4.2Raymond James FinancialFinancial Services
Tennessee Titans4.4NissanAuto
Washington Commanders6.1FedExDelivery Services

 *Values provided by Forbes and are accurate as of Aug. 23, 2023

Only three stadiums in the NFL operate without naming rights sponsorships as of 2023:

  • The Green Bay Packers play at historic Lambeau Field, re-named from City Stadium in 1965 after team founder and head coach Earl "Curly" Lambeau, who had passed away two months earlier. Packers president Mark Murphy has said "it will always be Lambeau Field," though the team has sold naming rights to several areas of the stadium.
  • The Chicago Bears have remained faithful to the Soldier Field name, with their stadium serving to honor those who died in combat during World War I. But the Bears could be on the move to a different part of the metro area – and a relocation would almost certainly come with a naming rights agreement that would add hundreds of millions in revenue.
  • The Cleveland Browns chose to end their naming rights partnership with utility services giant FirstEnergy in the spring of 2023 due to fallout from the company's involvement in the Ohio nuclear bribery scandal; their deal was originally set to run through 2029.

Naming Rights Sponsorship Values

Here's a look at the value of the NFL's 29 stadium naming rights deals (financial terms that were not made public have footnotes attached):

TeamSponsorStartEndAnnual Value
Arizona CardinalsState Farm20182036$8-9 million¹
Atlanta FalconsMercedes-Benz20152042$12 million²
Baltimore RavensM&T Bank20172027$6 million
Buffalo BillsHighmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY20212031Unknown
Carolina PanthersBank of America20042024$7 million
Cincinnati BengalsPaycor20222038$8-12 million³
Dallas CowboysAT&T2013NA$17-19 million⁴
Denver BroncosEmpower20192039$6 million⁵
Detroit LionsFord Motor Co.20022027$2 million
Houston TexansNRG Energy20002032$10 million
Indianapolis ColtsLucas Oil20062028$6 million
Jacksonville JaguarsEverBank20142024$4.3 million
Kansas City ChiefsGEHA20212031Unknown
Las Vegas RaidersAllegiant Travel Co.2019NA$20-25 million⁶
Los Angeles ChargersSoFi20202040~$15 million⁷
Los Angeles RamsSoFi20202040~$15 million
Miami DolphinsHard Rock20162034$13.9 million
Minnesota VikingsU.S. Bank20152040$8.8 million
New England PatriotsProcter & Gamble20102031~$8 million⁸
New Orleans SaintsCaesars Entertainment20212041$6.9 million
New York GiantsMetLife20112036$8 million
New York JetsMetLife20112036$8 million
Philadelphia EaglesLincoln Financial20022033$12 million
Pittsburgh SteelersAcrisure20222042>$10 million⁹
San Francisco 49ersLevi Strauss & Co.20132033$11 million
Seattle SeahawksCenturyLink, Inc.20112034$4.2 million
Tampa Bay BuccaneersRaymond James Financial19982028$3.2 million
Tennessee TitansNissan20152035$5 million
Washington CommandersFedEx19982025$7.6 million

It's fascinating how wide a disparity there is between the high and low ends of NFL stadium naming rights sponsorships. Five franchises are earning $5 million or less per year among the teams whose annual values are known, while 11 are at $10 million or more.

Here's a look at the 10 most valuable franchises and where they rank in terms of annual naming rights fees earned:

FranchiseValue RankSponsorship Rank
Dallas Cowboys12
New England Patriots2T14
Los Angeles Rams33
New York Giants4T14
Chicago Bears5NA
Las Vegas Raiders61
New York Jets7T14
Washington Commanders817
San Francisco 49ers99
Philadelphia Eagles108

While there isn't a direct correlation between franchise values and the cost of their stadium naming rights sponsorships, it's no surprise to see five of the 10 most valuable clubs also rank in the top nine in annual naming rights sponsorship value.

Sports Betting Sponsorships

While stadium naming rights get the bulk of the attention in the NFL advertising world, sports betting proliferation is garnering plenty of headlines, as well. We've seen a massive jump in partnerships between NFL franchises and the industry's best sports betting apps as more states legalize online sports betting each year.

Here's a look at the evolution of sports betting sponsorships by team since 2019:

Arizona Cardinals00111
Atlanta Falcons00111
Baltimore Ravens01211
Buffalo Bills00011
Carolina Panthers00001
Chicago Bears01100
Cincinnati Bengals00011
Cleveland Browns00010
Dallas Cowboys11111
Denver Broncos01111
Detroit Lions01222
Green Bay Packers00000
Houston Texans00000
Indianapolis Colts00000
Jacksonville Jaguars00000
Kansas City Chiefs00011
Las Vegas Raiders00011
LA Chargers00000
LA Rams00000
Miami Dolphins00000
Minnesota Vikings00000
New England Patriots00011
New Orleans Saints00000
New York Giants00011
New York Jets22322
Philadelphia Eagles00033
Pittsburgh Steelers01222
San Francisco 49ers00000
Seattle Seahawks00000
Tampa Bay Buccaneers00000
Tennessee Titans01111
Washington Commanders00111

Sports betting sponsorships have grown by a whopping 667% over the previous five years, though we finally saw the number of partnerships stabilize from 2022 to 2023. Have we reached a plateau? Or is this merely a one-year pause?

The answer to that question likely runs in tandem with whether we see some any movement among notable NFL states presently without legal sports betting. The three biggest states that haven't legalized wagering (California, Texas, Florida) host a combined five NFL franchises – and all but one have yet to align with a sports betting partner.

And while Florida sports betting is finally a go via Hard Rock and the Seminole Tribe, the Dolphins haven't yet capitalized on this via a sports betting partnership.

¹ Sports Business Journal, Sept. 4, 2018; ² Sports Business Journal, Feb. 22, 2016; ³ Sportico, Aug. 9, 2022; ⁴ Dallas Morning News, July 25, 2013; ⁵ The Associated Press, Sept. 4, 2019; ⁶ Las Vegas Review-Journal, Aug. 5, 2019; ⁷ BNN Bloomberg, Sept. 15, 2019; ⁸ Yahoo! Finance, Nov. 4, 2013; ⁹ Andrew Fillipponi (Twitter/X), July 11, 2022.

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