When you get to the top of the capitalism totem pole, the only thing that matters is money. And when it comes to acquiring an NFL franchise, it’s about how quickly you can deliver those funds to the league.
According to a report from Front Office Sports, the NFL expects the Denver Broncos to be on the market next year with an asking price near $4 billion. And two of the biggest names floating around are Jeff Bezos — the world’s richest man by 583 country miles — and Jay-Z, hip-hop’s first billionaire, the man who sold his soul to the devil and Roger Goodell all in the name of “social justice” because, as he once said, “we’re past kneeling.”
However, there are some reports that Jay-Z isn’t in the running at all, which would make sense, and cents, given that he can’t afford it.
The last time an NFL franchise was up for sale was in 2018 when David Tepper, a hedge fund manager and former minority owner of the Steelers with a five percent stake, bought the Carolina Panthers as the league was trying to rid itself of Jerry Richardson as he was facing allegations of being a racist, a terrible boss, and a sexual harasser.
I was in attendance at the NFL Owners meeting when it was announced that Tepper had been selected. He paid more than $2.2 billion for the Panthers in cash.
No layaway plan.
No business partners.
Tepper simply had that kind of money on him, and the deal was done — boom!
“I’m thrilled about this. It’s more than fantastic,” he said at the press conference.
To understand just how loaded Tepper is, you also have to look at where he stands among his peers. Tepper is tied as the eighth richest owner in sports, making him the wealthiest owner in the NFL. So, while he may be “the man” at NFL owner’s meetings, he looks broke compared to some of the other owners in the broader sports world who are worth two, three, or even four times more than he is.
In March of 2018, there were reports that Diddy and Steph Curry, along with Fanatics owner Michael Rubin, were among a group trying to buy the Panthers. The idea of the Panthers being owned by two Black men was an incredible idea, as the league has never had an African-American owner. However, it was never quite feasible. Their money wasn’t long enough. A week later, the asking price of the Panthers had risen to $2.5 billion, and Rubin, Diddy, and Curry decided to fold — giving Tepper the chance to step and stunt on everybody by dropping his card on the table to make the purchase.
If and when the Broncos — or any other NFL team — hit the market, don’t be surprised if something similar happens. Because as cool as it would be to have somebody like Diddy or Steph Curry as a majority owner of an NFL franchise, the limits on their credit cards aren’t high enough — yet. If Bezos wants the Broncos, then he’ll have them, since there’s nobody else that can outbid him. Unless Jay-Z did “that deal” with Roger Goodell for a reason.