Blog Entry

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

Posted on: August 31, 2011 6:16 am
OPENING HIT: The NFL has never been more popular. Not even the ugly lockout could injure it. It seems nothing can.

If that's true--and it is--then why are so many teams facing attendance problems?

The San Diego Chargers on Tuesday issued a release saying it has been granted another extension to sell enough tickets to avoid a blackout of its final preseason game.

It's an incredible situation. The Chargers are a good team in an affluent area with a large population. The Chargers have had problems selling tickets before which is why they are a main candidate to move to Los Angeles when that city gets off its ass and finally builds a stadium. Yes, problems before, but this still has to be concerning.

Indeed the NFL has to be alarmed over the overall ticket sale situation. Oakland, Jacksonville and Tampa are also having problems. In fact, all three Florida teams are having ticket sale issues. The Dolphins may be the most concerning of all. The Dolphins have a streak of 102 consecutive sellouts dating back to 1998. That record could fall this year.

What's happening? It's the economy, stupid. That's the primary factor. No question. People don't have the cash to pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars to go to a football game.

I'd also say there continues to be another huge factor in all of this: technology. To some, HD television makes watching games in the comfort of your own home more appealing than going to the actual game. Plus, at home, you don't have to worry about getting jumped.

Overall, I don't think fans believe going to a game is as important or status-oriented as it once was.

It's a strange thing. The NFL is at the top and fan interest is at an all-time high yet we're seeing, increasingly, I believe, fans staying home. This has to make the NFL exremely nervous.
Category: NFL
Tags: Chargers

Since: Apr 3, 2008
Posted on: September 1, 2011 2:51 am

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

As multiple people have stated, for a lot of people, not attending games isn't even about money. With HDTV, it is far more comfortable to invite friends over, keep track of your fantasy teams online, and eat good food in the comfort of your own home. While money isn't a problem for many people, it still is for a large segment of the country, so why fight traffic and spend an ass load of money when you can enjoy the temp-controlled comforts of home? As a Panthers fan who has always sat in the upper-deck, it's often hard to see close plays, especially since they rarely show them on the big screen, so I'd almost rather watch at home. However, especially in San Diego and Miami who have large and affluent populations, there's really no need for games not to be sold out. There are always people who buy tickets but don't go to the games. Why don't they give those tix away to inner-city kids who would be ecstatic to see their favorite players in action?

Since: Oct 1, 2010
Posted on: August 31, 2011 7:56 pm

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

I used to have season tickets. It was fun for a couple of years, but then it got old. I'd much rather watch the game at home. You don't have to deal with traffic issues, obnoxious fans, etc. Plus you don't miss out on the other games of the day (it takes so long to get out of the stadium and get home that you miss most of the next game). Not to mention the ability to surf on the internet at home during the game.

For me it's not a money issue. It's just far more enjoyable nowadays to watch from home.

Since: May 31, 2007
Posted on: August 31, 2011 1:54 pm

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

It's not rocket science, or even 'a strange thing.'  There's still a recession on, and people have less money for luxury spending.  Non-season ticket holders only budget for a few games per year.  If they have to cut one or two to save money, which ones will go?  The ones that don't mean anything.

The other major factor in my mind is still lockout related.  Not that fans have walked away from the game, but rather that nobody has drawn them in.  Most years, the teams spend tons of time and energy promoting the preseason games in an effort to sell off the tickets.  They are in radio contests, billboards, store promos with players that stop by, you name it.  I've seen none of that this year.  Presumably, the extremely shortened preseason has left the teams with very little time to be out playing PR pimps in an effort to pawn off exhibition tickets.  They have more important concerns in getting ready for the season on short notice.  So... the preseason tickets don't get sold, and they live with it.  That's part of the price of having let the lockout drag on as long as it did.

Since: Feb 21, 2009
Posted on: August 31, 2011 1:33 pm

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

We are paying to view it's call a cable bill.....

Since: Feb 23, 2008
Posted on: August 31, 2011 11:41 am

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

Mr. Freeman - Why should LA spend taxpayer money to build a stadium.  Let the NFL team that wants to move there spend some of their BILLIONS of dollors to do it. They could cut their intake in  half and still be pulling in billions.

Since: Oct 23, 2006
Posted on: August 31, 2011 9:34 am

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

Pretty simple really. 

Last year I took my wife and two kids to a Detroit Lion game.  60.00 per ticket x 4  240.00, 15.00 to park, 9.00 a beer, 5.00 a Coke, 4.00 a hotdog.

Spent almost 400.00 and was stuck in traffic fo over an hour after the game.  Pls dealing with all the drunk idiots that the NFL brings out.

The next week I watched it at home and enjoyed the game so much more.   I go to one game a season and that is more than enough.

Since: May 23, 2007
Posted on: August 31, 2011 9:05 am

The Daily Shoutout: The attendance issue

Pay per view.  Unless your stadium is sold out, pay per view will make the 'sit at home and complain' fans buy a ticket.  Or it could turn them completely off and the team might leave, but where are they going to go?  To LA where empty seats ruled for many many years?  LA might have avoided blackouts because people would buy a seat, but never go to a game.

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