By Tim Graham
After posting this afternoon's item on Forbes magazine's annual report of the 50 most valuable sports franchises, some readers asked how much the Buffalo Bills have fluctuated over the years.
Here is the ledger from Forbes (with NFL rank) and a link to each capsule:
2011 -- $792 million (29th)
2010 -- $799 million (28th)
2009 -- $909 million (26th)
2008 -- $885 million (27th)
2007 -- $821 million (27th)
2006 -- $756 million (25th)
2005 -- $708 million (25th)
2004 -- $637 million (24th)
2003 -- $564 million (26th)
2002 -- $458 million (25th)
Based on past practice, Forbes should release its 2012 NFL valuations within the next couple months.
The Bills' valuation for 2011 was their lowest since 2006 and the league ranking was their worst over the past decade.
This takes into account the sweetheart $78 million Toronto deal that might not be nearly as lucrative when it's renewed. Both sides have acknowledged lower ticket prices in the Rogers Centre are necessary for the series to gain traction and announced last week prices for this year's game have been slashed an average of 35 percent.
The Forbes estimations underscore the Bills' decision to stick with the NFL's old blackout policy rather than adopt the relaxed guidelines that allow teams the option to sell as few as 85 percent of their non-premium tickets and still show their games on local television.
Forbes' data and calculations suggest the Bills are near the bottom financially and slipping at a time when Los Angeles is eager for a team or two. The Bills must maximize revenues and protect their precious season-ticket holders as much as they can.