1. The talent level is close and comparable on almost all 32 teams. There are no super teams in the NFL, just well coached teams with good game plans that cater to a specific strength. Other leagues the coach has nowhere near as much influence on the outcome of winning and losing as the NFL.
2.Age restrictions. The NFL requires it’s players to be 3+ years removed from high school. As a result they are more polished coming into a man’s game. Baseball has no age restrictions, and basketball has a 1 year restriction meaning many 18 or 19 year olds can become pro athletes. This waters down the league with players not ready to play in both sports, while the NFL has a better group of pro ready athletes at draft.
3.Draft process. The NFL has scouting combines, Senior Bowls, East-West Shrine Games, mountains of scouts watching film, interview processes, personal work outs. While all the other pro sports have this as well, none do it as well, as organized, or with as many layers as the NFL. It also helps the fans get to know the prospects where as other sports, particularly baseball, there isn’t as much fan interaction.
4.The team is bigger than the player. This is my main love for the NFL. The teams are always more important than the players. Baseball has monster contracts for players like A-Rod or Pujols. Basketball has max contracts. Football has a culture that always says the team is priority. Lebron James and Miami come to mind as transitory fans following a player. Football encourages team and city loyalty more than any other sport.
5.College degrees. While I am in no way saying a college degree makes you a better person, the NFL vastly outshines MLB, NHL, and NBA college graduates combined in players who have earned degrees. Players aside, NFL coaching staffs have more college degrees than MLB, NBA, or NHL as well. Players and coaches alike are more ahead of the field in the NFL. For an example, in 2010 880 NFL players were college grads compared to 80 in the NBA. Even though NBA has a 15 man roster and NFL has 50, if you multiplied the NBA college grads by 3 you would get 240-880 NFL over NBA. That’s just sad.