A football fantasy: Ranking the NFL with economics
The NFL season has begun — and hope abounds for every team and every city. The Denver Broncos defeated the Baltimore Ravens in the first game of the season, which was something of a surprise to NFL fans. But for the Marketplace Wealth & Poverty Desk, it was exactly in line with our own power rankings.
ESPN, Sports Illustrated and the sports media guys have crunched their stats, turning raw data into story lines that will follow the teams through the season. But at the Marketplace Wealth & Poverty Team (ahem, Desk) we think we’ve found a data set of other numbers:
From our perspective, the team with the highest ‘power ranking’ is the San Francisco 49ers.
No, Jim Harbaugh’s team hasn’t locked down a spot in the Super Bowl (yet). But the city does have the highest median income of any NFL city ($69,894). By that measure, Denver tops Baltimore — just like the Broncos did on the field.
In second and third place, the Washington Redskins ($63,124) and the Seattle Seahawks ($61,037).
And like any other game, for every winner there’s a loser.
At the bottom of our W&P power rankings is the Detroit Lions. Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson play their ball in a city with a median income well under half that of the 49ers home city (Detroit’s median income is $25,193). The Cleveland Browns just narrowly avoided the cellar (median income $25,371) and the Miami Dolphins round out the bottom three, with a median income of $28,536.
We’ve got the full rankings – and how they compare to ESPN’s actual power rankings – below.
NFL rankings, W&P style
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|City||W&P rankings||Median Income||ESPN rankings|
|New York Giants||7||$49,461||12|
|New York Jets||7||$49,461||32|
|Boston (New England)||8||$49,081||6|