The NFL season is almost here, guys. Football! You can tell it's close because people are buying tickets to games. But which games are the hottest and which teams are seeing an uptick in sales? Glad you asked and, fortunately, the folks at StubHub have some ticket sales data for us to dive into and examine ahead of the 2018 NFL season.
We can tell by looking at the most popular game of the year...
Top Games for 2018 NFL Season
That game, as it turns out, is a fever dream for NFL executives who want to see the league eventually put a team in London. As it turns out, the top-selling game for 2018 so far involves the Jaguars and Eagles playing in London (a "home" game for Jacksonville).
Also, some breaking news: the Cowboys remain popular.
The London love isn't entirely a surge of overseas fans though: 37 percent of the sales for that game are coming from the state of Pennsylvania. That's StubHub's highest percentage of sales from a single state for a London game in the company's history of tracking such matters. It's also the first time an international game has popped up on this list, which should reveal a surprising fact for the NFL: IF YOU PUT GOOD TEAMS IN LONDON WE WILL WATCH THOSE GAMES.
Fascinating to see the Packers hosting a bunch of games on there, right? It goes to show you that Vikings fans and Bears fans are highly optimistic about this season. Enjoy your trip to Lambeau Field guys, I'm sure nothing can go wrong!
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Winning cures everything, and if you need further proof, just look at the growth in StubHub's top team year-over-year. The Jacksonville Jaguars saw a 318 percent (!) growth in terms of ticket sales over the last year. If you think going to the AFC Championship Game and looking like a budding defensive dynasty generates sales, imagine!
The other teams on that list shouldn't be shocking either: the 49ers are one of the trendiest teams in the league thanks to Jimmy Garoppolo coming to town, the Rams are trending towards becoming a perennial playoff contender and are the top NFC West favorites, the Eagles just won the Super Bowl and the Jets just landed Sam Darnold, injecting hope straight into the veins of their fans.
Over the last four years (click above), the Rams dominate the growth on StubHub -- moving to a new city and having the team be good might pay off pretty nicely for the Rams and the NFL. You'll notice the Raiders are on the list as well.
Top Week 1 Games
How aggressively are Cowboys fans hoping for a big year? The top in-demand game for the entire 2018 season isn't the Eagles hosting the Falcons (No. 2), it's Dallas visiting Carolina to play the Panthers on the first Sunday of the season. It has a lower average price than the Falcons at Eagles, but that shouldn't be surprising considering Atlanta-Philly is on a Thursday and is the first game of the year and the first Eagles game since they won the Super Bowl.
So as you can see, the Jaguars and Eagles are very, very popular. But, they're not the MOST popular team ...
The Cowboys cannot be toppled. Even as their offensive linemen drop like flies, the Cowboys reign supreme in terms of ticket sales. Look at these animals: FOUR STRAIGHT YEARS as the top-selling team according to StubHub's data. There's probably something about people being adults in the '90s growing up as Cowboys fans and teaching their kids to be Cowboys fans despite not living in Texas (they were America's team!) and therefore there are people all over the country trying to get to Cowboys games when they travel. See: above with the Panthers matchup in Week 1.
So what's the main takeaway here? The Cowboys are very popular, but the Jaguars are coming for them. Jacksonville: America's NEW Team? Sure why not.