Steeler fans already know boast about how they feel they root for the best football team in the world. Now, ESPN the Magazine has put out their “Ultimate Standings” for the best franchises, and the Steelers rank a very high third overall, tops in the NFL on the list. Here is the presser from ESPN on the Steelers ranking:

According to ESPN The Magazine’s seventh annual “Ultimate Standings” the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are the best major league sports franchise when it comes to paying fans back for their investment of time, money and passion: and the Los Angeles Clippers are the worst.
Available in the current issue of ESPN The Magazine, on newsstands Friday, Ultimate Standings is the only comprehensive ranking of all 122 major North American professional sports franchises. It aims to quantify the unique relationship between fans and their favorite teams by determining which MLB, NBA, NFL and NHL franchises establish and maintain the most overall reward for their fans.
This year’s winner and cover subject, the Angels understand the importance of value, performance and effort and did so before the recession hit. Fans love the experience of going to Angels games, in particular, the promotions (75 promotions in 81 home dates this year) and the ticket prices, with an average cost of just $20.05. Since the 2007 season, the Angels have won 232 games (as of 6/26), more than any MLB team except the Red Sox. On the field, manager Mike Scioscia has instilled a hard charging, take-every-extra base style of play. They have a knack for identifying talent, keeping them in pennant contention virtually every year. The Angels have drawn at least 3.3 million fans every year since 2004, never finishing lower then second in AL attendance in part to owner Arte Moreno and the staff’s dedication to customer service. Add all of this together and the result is the No. 1 Franchise.
Arte Moreno: “This honor means a great deal to our organization because it was voted on by the fans. I am extremely proud of our staff for working day in and day out to provide what we call the “Baseball Experience”. Their focus is always on our fans which would include providing courteous service, affordable pricing, and a clean environment. And, of course, the baseball people work hard to put a winning team on the field!”
Top 10 overall franchises: Bottom 10 overall franchises:
1. Los Angeles Angels 113. Minnesota Timberwolves
2. Carolina Hurricanes 114. Cleveland Browns
3. Pittsburgh Steelers 115. New York Islanders
4. Detroit Red Wings 116. Oakland Raiders
5. Cleveland Cavaliers 117. Sacramento Kings
6. Washington Capitals 118. Cincinnati Bengals
7. Milwaukee Brewers 119. Detroit Lions
8. Pittsburgh Penguins 120. Toronto Maple Leafs
9. San Antonio Spurs 121. New York Knicks
10. St. Louis Blues 122. Los Angeles Clippers
Driven by research and fan feedback, the Ultimate Standings debuted in 2003 with Green Bay Packers as the top franchise (ranked 13th this year). Results are determined using analysis of team financial data by The Magazine and the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, combined with fan feedback data gathered by the Chicago consulting firm Maddock Douglas, and GMI NetReflector. To generate the Ultimate Standings, ESPN The Magazine scores each franchise according to criteria in eight categories; the combined scores resulted in an overall ranking (as well as separate rankings in each individual category). More than 50,000 responses were gathered. The data was analyzed, weighted and combined to arrive at a score and ranking of all the franchises in the following categories.

  • Affordability from tickets to apparel to parking to concessions what it costs to be a fan of a franchise:

  • # 1: Tampa Bay Rays
  • # 122: Toronto Maple Leafs

  • Coaching quality of on-field coaching/managing for the franchise:

  • # 1/Tie: San Antonio Spurs & New England Patriots
  • # 122: Los Angeles Clippers

  • Fan Relations how the teams and owners interact with the local fan base:

  • # 1: Detroit Red Wings
  • # 122. Cincinnati Bengals

  • Ownership overall commitment and effort owner makes to players, coaches and fans, as well as a willingness to spend money and commit to winning:

  • # 1: Detroit Red Wings
  • # 122: Phoenix Coyotes

  • Players effort given on the court, field or ice, in addition to how likable they are off them:

  • # 1: Cleveland Cavaliers
  • # 122: Los Angeles Clippers

  • Stadium Experience the cleanliness, parking, security and promotions at the home venue:

  • # 1: Green Bay Packers
  • # 122: New York Islanders

  • Title Track (winning) how successful and dedicated the team has been in pursuing and winning championships:

  • # 1/Tie: Los Angeles Angels & Detroit Red Wings
  • # 122: Golden State Warriors

  • Bang for The Buck wins over the past three years, measured against the money it receives directly from fans:

  • # 1: New Orleans Hornets
  • # 122: St. Louis Rams
NHL Leads With Five Franchises in Top 10:
Five NHL franchises (#2 Carolina Hurricanes, #4 Detroit Red Wings, #6 Washington Capitals, #8 Pittsburgh Penguins, #10 St. Louis Blues) finished in the Top 10, a first ever in the rankings.
Teams that are Most (And Least) Committed to Winning:
1. Detroit Red Wings
122. Pittsburgh Pirates
Best in Each League:
MLB: 1. Los Angeles Angels
NBA: 5. Cleveland Cavaliers
NFL: 3. Pittsburgh Steelers
NHL: 2. Carolina Hurricanes
Worst in Each League:
MLB: 107. New York Yankees
NBA: 122. Los Angeles Clippers
NFL: 119. Detroit Lions
NHL: 120. Toronto Maple Leafs
Teams Most Responsive to Fan Feedback:
1. Washington Capitals
2. Green Bay Packers
3. Chicago Blackhawks
Teams Least Responsive to Fan Feedback:
120. Los Angeles Clippers
121. Toronto Maple Leafs
122. Detroit LionsTeams with Highest-Rated Promotional Giveaways:

1. Los Angeles Angels (examples: Angels cooler, Rally Monkey bank)
2. Kansas City Royals (Royals Kids Golden Gloves)
3. St. Louis Blues (Free Food Night)
4. Milwaukee Brewers (six different bobbleheads)
5. Carolina Hurricanes (Canes Car Flags)
Biggest Jumps/Drops Since 2007 :
Chicago Blackhawks up 97 spots to #21
Boston Celtics up 92 to #20
Tampa Bay Rays up 70 to #16
Buffalo Sabres down 62 (from #1) to #63
Tampa Bay Lightning down 68 to #85
Phoenix Suns down 75 to #86