The Dallas Cowboys are an American football team that plays in the Eastern Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). They are headquartered in Valley Ranch in Irving, Texas, a suburb of Dallas. The team plays its home games at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, a suburb of Fort Worth which finished construction in time for the 2009 season. The Cowboys joined the NFL as a 1960 expansion team. The team's national following might best be represented by its NFL record of consecutive home sell-outs. The Cowboys' streak of 160 sold-out regular and post-season games began in 1990, and included 79 straight sellouts at their former home, Texas Stadium, and 81 straight sell-outs on the road. The franchise shares the record for most Super Bowl appearances (8) with the Pittsburgh Steelers, corresponding to most NFC championships (8). The Cowboys are the only NFL team to record 20 consecutive winning seasons (1966–1985), in which they only missed the playoffs twice (1974 and 1984), an NFL record that remains unbroken and unchallenged. It remains one of the longest winning streaks in all of professional sports.
An article from Forbes Magazine, dated September 2, 2009, lists the Cowboys as the highest valued sports franchise in the history of the United States, and second in the world (behind Manchester United of the English Premier League ), with an estimated value of approximately $1.65 billion, above the Washington Redskins ($1.5 billion) and the New England Patriots ($1.361 billion). They are also the wealthiest team in the NFL, generating almost $269 million in annual revenue.