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Second-round bids for Denver Broncos ownership reportedly due in June

Matt Johnson
Denver Broncos
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The upcoming Denver Broncos sale is headed towards a crucial point of the bidding process with the remaining five competitors now preparing to submit their second round of bids. It’s another step in what will be the most expensive team purchase in American sports history.

Of the five groups left in play, Walmart heir Rob Walton is viewed as the favorite with plenty of support from NFL owners. With an estimated net worth approaching $70 billion, he stands the best chance at offering the most direct capital in any potential deal.

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The NFL recently included a new stipulation regarding team sales with any proposal needing to be fully capitalized when they are submitted. Given all five groups are advancing to the next stage of the bidding process, having already toured the stadium, all five offers meet the NFL’s requirements of $2.5 billion in cash being made available immediately.

According to the Denver Business Journal, all five groups must now submit their second-round bids to the Pat Bowlen Trust overseeing the process. The expectation remains that the final sale will be the highest price ever paid for an American sports team.

Related: Denver Broncos sale could lead to $2 billion stadium

How much will the Denver Broncos sell for?

NFL: Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

When the Broncos first went up for sale, early estimates projected the NFL franchise would sell for nearly $4 billion. The bidding war has driven the price up further with Walton competing against a group led by billionaire Josh Harris and NBA legend Magic Johnson driving up the price tag.

Conservative estimates now forecast the final sale costing at least $4.5 billion, with an increasing belief the price tag could approach or exceed $5 billion. The total cost doesn’t include the possibility of a new stadium, which is on the table for select groups.

No matter the final figure, it will be a record-setting moment for the NFL and professional sports. Billionaire David Tepper bought the Carolina Panthers for $2.275 million in 2018, which is currently the largest purchase price ever for an NFL team. In American sports history, Steve Cohen holds the record with his $2.4 billion purchase of the New York Mets in 2020.

It all bodes well for the future of the NFL and increases the likelihood of another team being sold in the coming years. Given Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder is under investigation, the possibility of the NFL forcing him to sell exists. If the Commanders are put up for bid, the price tag will easily surpass $5 billion.