How Many NFL Teams Are There & How Do They Rank All-Time?

How Many NFL Teams Are There & How Do They Rank All-Time?

The National Football League (NFL) is home of all the best football players in the world. The league was formed in 1920 with 10 teams, though it was known as the American Professional Football Association (APFA) at the time. Through the years, the league has evolved greatly. 

So, how many NFL teams are there? Today, there are a total of 32 teams from 23 states. They’re divided into two 16-team conferences – the American Football Conference and the National Football Conference – and further divided into eight four-team divisions. 

The only states with more than one NFL team are California (3), Florida (3), Ohio (2), Maryland (2), New Jersey (2), Pennsylvania (2), and Texas (2). The largest state without an NFL team is Virginia and there are a total of 27 states in the US without an NFL team – room to grow maybe? 

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Ranking the 32 NFL Teams by All-Time Winning Percentage

We know how many NFL teams are there, but how do those teams rank all-time? Well, there are a number of ways you can measure that and it’ll result in a different list every single time. You can look at the number of championships, wins, division wins, or even conference wins. 

Personally, I believe the best way to measure this is through all-time winning percentage – in the regular season and playoffs. Since not all teams joined at the same time and some have played more or less games than others, looking at winning percentage gives a solid base point. 

It’s always interesting to see how NFL teams rank all-time versus how they rank today. For example, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers – who we’ll get to in just a moment – have the worst winning percentage all-time, but are considered one of the best teams in the league today. 

32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Year Joined NFL: 1976

Regular Season Record: 284-430-1

Playoffs Record: 10-9

Combined W-L%: .401

Championships: 2 (2002, 2020)

Despite landing at No. 32 on this list, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are one of just 14 teams to win at least two Super Bowls – both coming in the past 20 years. They play in the NFC South, have 11 playoff appearances, won six divisional championships, and two conference championships. 

31. Arizona Cardinals

Year Joined NFL: 1920

Regular Season Record: 568-771-41

Playoffs Record: 7-9

Combined W-L%: .424

Championships: 0

The Arizona Cardinals have relocated several times since joining the NFL in 1920 as the Racine Cardinals. They’ve also played in Chicago, St. Louis, and Phoenix. They currently have 11 playoff appearances, seven division championships, and one conference championship. 

30. Jacksonville Jaguars

Year Joined NFL: 1995

Regular Season Record: 177-244-0

Playoffs Record: 7-7

Combined W-L%: .428

Championships: 0

The Jacksonville Jaguars have been the laughing stock of the NFL the past three seasons, but that’s nothing new for them. In their 27-year history, they’ve never won a conference championship and only won three division championships, despite seven playoff appearances.

29. Atlanta Falcons

Year Joined NFL: 1966

Regular Season Record: 369-475-6

Playoffs Record: 10-14

Combined W-L%: .438

Championships: 0

The Atlanta Falcons came close to winning their first championship, but gave up a 25-point lead to the Patriots in Super Bowl LI. They play in the NFC South and have made a total of 14 playoff appearances, won six division championships, and won two conference championships.

28. Cincinnati Bengals

Year Joined NFL: 1968

Regular Season Record: 364-453-5

Playoffs Record: 5-14

Combined W-L%: .442

Championships: 0

The Cincinnati Bengals enjoyed a successful 10-year stretch from 2005-2015 under head coach Marvin Lewis, making it to the playoffs seven times in that span. They’ve only made the playoffs seven other times, making it to the Super Bowl twice – losing by a single possession in both. 

27. Houston Texans

Year Joined NFL: 2002

Regular Season Record: 136-171-0

Playoffs Record: 4-6

Combined W-L%: .443

Championships: 0

The Houston Texans are the newest expansion team in the NFL, joining the league in 2002. They’ve won six division championships in the past 10 years, making it to the playoffs six times in that span. Unfortunately, the franchise is currently going through a drama-filled, total rebuild. 

26. New York Jets

Year Joined NFL: 1970

Regular Season Record: 410-516-8

Playoffs Record: 12-13

Combined W-L%: .445

Championships: 1 (1968)

The New York Jets were an original AFL team, but joined the NFL after the two leagues merged in 1970. Since then, the Jets have made the playoffs 12 times, won four division championships, and won a Super Bowl in 1968. The 2010 season was the last time the Jets made the playoffs.

25. Detroit Lions

Year Joined NFL: 1930

Regular Season Record: 567-683-33

Playoffs Record: 7-13

Combined W-L%: .454

Championships: 0

The Detroit Lions joined the NFL in 1930 as the Portsmouth Spartans, but eventually relocated to Detroit four years later. Despite making 21 playoff appearances, winning four division championships, and four conference championships, the Lions have never won a Super Bowl.

24. New Orleans Saints

Year Joined NFL: 1967

Regular Season Record: 388-443-5

Playoffs Record: 10-13

Combined W-L%: .466

Championships: 1 (2009)

The New Orleans Saints were an expansion team in 1967 and struggled to win games over the next several decades. Things started to turn around when Sean Payton and Drew Brees came into town in 2006. Since then, they’ve been one of the most successful teams in the league. 

23. Buffalo Bills

Year Joined NFL: 1960

Regular Season Record: 439-487-8

Playoffs Record: 16-18

Combined W-L%: .474

Championships: 0

The Buffalo Bills are one of the most historic franchises in the NFL. Although they’ve been a mediocre team over the past 80 years, they enjoyed a lot of success in the 1990s and appeared in four straight Super Bowls. They stunk for 17 years, but they’re back to their winning ways. 

22. Carolina Panthers

Year Joined NFL: 1995

Regular Season Record: 203-215-1

Playoffs Record: 9-8

Combined W-L%: .484

Championships: 0

The Carolina Panthers joined the NFL as an expansion team in 1995. They’ve won six division championships, won 2 conference championships, and have been to the playoffs eight times. John Fox and Ron Rivera account for 157 of the franchise’s 203 wins from 2002-2019. 

21. Tennessee Titans

Year Joined NFL: 1960

Regular Season Record: 452-476-6

Playoffs Record: 17-22

Combined W-L%: .485

Championships: 0

Previously the Houston Oilers, the Tennessee Titans are one of the more successful teams to never win a title. They’ve won six division championships, one conference championship, and appeared in 19 playoffs. They have won at least nine games in each of the past five seasons.

20. Cleveland Browns

Year Joined NFL: 1950

Regular Season Record: 487-506-11

Playoffs Record: 12-21

Combined W-L%: .486

Championships: 0

Speaking of NFL teams that haven’t won a Super Bowl, the Cleveland Browns spent most of the 2000s as the doormat of the NFL. They have 25 playoff appearances, 9 division championships, and 11 conference championships. Their woes continue, despite having a really good roster.

19. Philadelphia Eagles

Year Joined NFL: 1933

Regular Season Record: 591-620-27

Playoffs Record: 23-23

Combined W-L%: .489

Championships: 1 (2017)

The Philadelphia Eagles joined the NFL as a replacement team in 1933 after the Frankford Yellow Jackets went bankrupt. They’ve won 14 division championships, four conference championships, and one Super Bowl. They’ve appeared in the playoffs 27 times. 

18. Los Angeles Chargers

Year Joined NFL: 1970

Regular Season Record: 460-463-11

Playoffs Record: 12-18

Combined W-L%: .495

Championships: 0

Formerly known as the San Diego Chargers, the Los Angeles Chargers joined the NFL in 1970 after 10 years in the AFL. Since 1970, they’ve won 10 division championships, one conference championship, and made 14 playoff appearances. Their future is bright with Justin Herbert. 

17. Washington Football Team

Year Joined NFL: 1932

Regular Season Record: 611-613-28

Playoffs Record: 23-20

Combined W-L%: .500

Championships: 3 (1982, 1987, 1991)

The Washington Football Team, formerly known as the Redskins, are in the midst of a rebuild and are one quarterback away from contending once again. They’ve made 25 playoff appearances, won 15 division championships, and won five conference championships. 

16. Los Angeles Rams

Year Joined NFL: 1937

Regular Season Record: 589-575-21

Playoffs Record: 22-27

Combined W-L%: .503

Championships: 1 (1999)

The Los Angeles Rams played in LA from 1946-1994 before relocating to St. Louis for 20 years. They returned to LA in 2016 and have enjoyed quite a bit of success under Sean McVay. They’ve made the playoffs in three of the past four seasons and are built for the future. 

15. Seattle Seahawks

Year Joined NFL: 1976

Regular Season Record: 368-341-1

Playoffs Record: 17-18

Combined W-L%: .517

Championships: 1 (2013)

The Seattle Seahawks joined the NFL in 1976 and are the only team to appear in both the AFC and NFC Championship. They’ve made 19 playoff appearances, won 11 division championships, and three conference championships. They won their only Super Bowl in 2013. 

14. Las Vegas Raiders

Year Joined NFL: 1960

Regular Season Record: 483-440-11

Playoffs Record: 25-19

Combined W-L%: .524

Championships: 3 (1976, 1980, 1983)

Previously in Oakland and Los Angeles, the Las Vegas Raiders are currently in their second season in Sin City. They’ve made 19 playoff appearances, won 12 division championships, and won four conference championships. They won three Super Bowls in an eight-year span. 

13. Indianapolis Colts

Year Joined NFL: 1953

Regular Season Record: 534-475-7

Playoffs Record: 23-25

Combined W-L%: .528

Championships: 2 (1970, 2006)

The Indianapolis Colts used to represent Baltimore until the team relocated in 1984. They won 16 division championships, seven conference championships, three NFL championships, two Super Bowls, and appeared in 29 playoffs. They’ve had double-digit wins 16 times since 1999.

12. New York Giants

Year Joined NFL: 1925

Regular Season Record: 720-602-33

Playoffs Record: 24-25

Combined W-L%: .530

Championships: 4 (1986, 1990, 2007, 2011)

The New York Giants have been in the NFL since 1925 and have never changed their name or relocated. Throughout their history, they’ve made 32 playoff appearances and won 16 division championships, 11 conference championships, four Super Bowls, and four NFL Championships.

11. Denver Broncos

Year Joined NFL: 1970

Regular Season Record: 490-434-10

Playoffs Record: 23-19

Combined W-L%: .530

Championships: 3 (1997, 1998, 2015)

The Denver Broncos joined the NFL in 1970 after a decade in the AFL. While they didn’t have much success in the AFL, they’ve made 22 playoff appearances since joining the NFL and have won 15 division championships, eight conference championships, and three Super Bowls. 

10. Kansas City Chiefs

Year Joined NFL: 1970

Regular Season Record: 496-426-12

Playoffs Record: 15-20

Combined W-L%: .534

Championships: 2 (1969, 2019)

The Kansas City Chiefs joined the AFL in 1960 and then the NFL when the two merged in 1970. They’ve appeared in the playoffs 23 times and won 13 division championships, two conference championships, three AFL championships, and two Super Bowls that were 50 years apart. 

9. San Francisco 49ers

Year Joined NFL: 1950

Regular Season Record: 591-499-16

Playoffs Record: 32-20

Combined W-L%: .535

Championships: 5 (1981, 1984, 1988, 1989, 1994)

The San Francisco 49ers won five Super Bowls in a 14-year span and have a 32-20 all-time playoff record. They joined the NFL in 1950 after four years in the AAFC. They’ve won 20 division championships, seven conference championships, and made 26 playoff appearances.

8. Pittsburgh Steelers

Year Joined NFL: 1933

Regular Season Record: 644-557-21

Playoffs Record: 36-26

Combined W-L%: .538

Championships: 6 (1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 2005, 2008)

The Pittsburgh Steelers have been in the NFL since 1933, meaning there’s a lot of history packed in this franchise. They’ve appeared in the playoffs 32 times, won 24 divisional championships, eight conference championships, and six Super Bowls – tied for the most all-time. 

7. Minnesota Vikings

Year Joined NFL: 1961

Regular Season Record: 495-414-11

Playoffs Record: 21-30

Combined W-L%: .538

Championships: 0

The Minnesota Vikings are hands-down the most successful NFL team to never win a Super Bowl, despite appearing in four between 1970-1977. They’ve won 20 division championships, four conference championships, one NFL championship, and have been to the playoffs 30 times. 

6. Miami Dolphins

Year Joined NFL: 1966

Regular Season Record: 468-378-4

Playoffs Record: 20-21

Combined W-L%: .550

Championships: 2 (1972, 1973)

The Miami Dolphins were the first NFL team in the southeast and are the oldest professional sports team in the state of Florida. They’ve been in the playoffs 23 times and won 13 division championships, five conference championships, and back-to-back Super Bowls in 1972-1973.

5. Chicago Bears

Year Joined NFL: 1920

Regular Season Record: 778-600-42

Playoffs Record: 17-20

Combined W-L%: .560

Championships: 1 (1985)

The Chicago Bears were one of the original NFL teams in 1920, operating as the Decatur Staleys. They relocated to Chicago in 1921 and changed their name the following season. They’ve been to the playoffs 28 times and won 19 division championships, four conference championships, and one Super Bowl. 

4. Baltimore Ravens

Year Joined NFL: 1996

Regular Season Record: 226-175-1

Playoffs Record: 16-11

Combined W-L%: .566

Championships: 2 (2000, 2012)

The Baltimore Ravens have been one of the most successful teams in the NFL since joining the league as an expansion team in 1996. Over the past 25 years, they’ve appeared in the playoffs 13 times, won six division championships, two conference championships, and two Super Bowls.

3. New England Patriots

Year Joined NFL: 1960

Regular Season Record: 520-405-9

Playoffs Record: 37-21

Combined W-L%: .566

Championships: 6 (2001, 2003, 2004, 2014, 2016, 2018)

The New England Patriots might be No. 3 on this list, but many people view them as the premier NFL franchise – and for good reason. They’ve made the playoffs 27 times and won 22 division championships, 11 conference championships, and six Super Bowls – tied for the most all-time.

2. Dallas Cowboys

Year Joined NFL: 1960

Regular Season Record: 527-399-6

Playoffs Record: 35-28

Combined W-L%: .568

Championships: 5 (1971, 1977, 1992, 1993, 1995)

The Dallas Cowboys recorded 20 straight winning seasons at one point from 1966-1985, so it’s no surprise to see them at No. 2 on this list. In their history, they’ve made 34 playoff appearances, won 23 division championships, 10 conference championships, and five Super Bowls. 

1. Green Bay Packers

Year Joined NFL: 1921

Regular Season Record: 770-578-38

Playoffs Record: 36-24

Combined W-L%: .571

Championships: 4 (1966, 1967, 1996, 2010)

The Green Bay Packers have been the most consistent team in NFL history, constantly finding themselves among the top of the power rankings. They’ve made 35 playoff appearances and won 21 division championships, nine conference championships, four Super Bowls, and 11 NFL Championships. 

Will the NFL Consider Adding More Teams?

When you asked how many NFL teams are there and we said 32, we also mentioned the fact that there are currently 27 states without a professional football team. That shows there’s a lot of room for growth, but does that mean the NFL is interested in adding more teams to the mix? 

Well, there’s a lot of talk right now about the possibility of expansion in the future – how serious those talks are and how soon things would happen are unknown. With that said, the talk around the league is that it could expand to 40 teams. Not all at once, of course, but rather over time. 

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It’s not entirely crazy to think of the possibility, especially since the league has been open to expansion in the past – even more recently with the transition to a 17-game season. In fact, an expansion team could be on the horizon if the NFL gifts St. Louis a franchise to resolve conflict.

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