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Forbes ranks Carolina Panthers among world’s most valuable sports teams

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, left and running back Jonathan Stewart, center, joke around while taking a selfie during the Super Bowl Opening Night at SAP Center in San Jose, CA. The Carolina Panthers will face the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, CA. At right is wide receiver Ted Ginn, Jr.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton, left and running back Jonathan Stewart, center, joke around while taking a selfie during the Super Bowl Opening Night at SAP Center in San Jose, CA. The Carolina Panthers will face the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50 on Feb. 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, CA. At right is wide receiver Ted Ginn, Jr. jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

The Carolina Panthers’ near-perfect record and Super Bowl appearance last season look to have boosted more than just the team’s profile.

The Panthers are the No. 40 most valuable sports team in the world this year, according to Forbes, which just released its rankings of the top 50 richest teams of 2016.

The team owned by Jerry Richardson has a current value of $1.56 billion, which is up 25 percent from last year, Forbes said.

The Panthers ranked right behind the Minnesota Vikings, which are valued at $1.59 billion, and right above Liverpool, valued at $1.55 billion.

Forbes ranked the Dallas Cowboys the most valuable team of 2016, with a current value of $4 billion, up 25 percent from last year.

NFL franchises made up 27 of the 50 most valuable sports teams on Forbes’ list.

Last month, Forbes said Panthers quarterback Cam Newton ranked among the world’s highest paid athletes last year, with earnings of $53.1 million. He was the highest ranked NFL player on the list.

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