A well-known sports radio host in New York has the football world buzzing after stiring up speculation over another potential team sale.
Mike Francesa, known for his tenure on the WFAN radio station in New York City, suggested on a recent edition of his BetRivers podcast (h/t Elite Sports NY) that the New York Jets could soon be up for sale:
“I’ve been hearing rumblings that the franchise could be sold in the next couple of years, from people who should know things.”
Woody Johnson has owned the Jets since 2000, having purchased the franchise for $635 million. In Forbes‘ most recent NFL valuations, the Jets were valued at $5.4 billion, which placed them seventh on the list.
Only the Dallas Cowboys ($8 billion), New England Patriots ($6.4 billion), Los Angeles Rams ($6.2 billion), New York Giants ($6 billion), Chicago Bears ($5.8 billion) and Washington Commanders ($5.6 billion) were valued higher than the Jets.
Of course, NFL teams often sell well above market value. And because the Jets play in the massive New York market, Johnson could expect to fetch far more than $5.4 billion for his franchise. The Denver Broncos play in a much smaller market and were recently sold to the Walton-Penner group for $4.65 billion.
The Johnson ownership era got off to a promising start for the Jets, who recorded four winning seasons over his first five season at the helm. The franchise reached the playoffs six times between 2001 and 2010, including surprising trips to the 2009 and 2010 AFC Championship Games.
But the Jets haven’t made the playoffs in 12 years now, far-and-away the longest active playoff drought. The franchise last recorded a winning season in 2015, and they’ve exceeded five wins just once since 2016.
For what it’s worth, Johnson hasn’t given any indication that he’s looking to sell the Jets. But if he ultimately decides it’s time, the 75-year-old can expect a giant payday that would greatly enhance the value of NFL teams.