High school football is a big deal in Texas, but that’s not going to make the NFL feel any better about this weekend’s embarrassing ticket situation.
According to USA Today, three high school games (two in Texas and one in California) have higher ticket prices than three Week 15 NFL games.
Tickets for two Texas high school semifinal matchups — Allen vs. Cedar Ridge and Katy vs. Travis — are selling for $10 and $15, respectively, while those for the California state title game between Mater Dei and De La Salle cost $15.
Those certainly aren’t exorbitant prices, but they’re still higher than secondary market ticket prices for the NFL’s Denver at Indianapolis, Arizona at Washington and Baltimore at Cleveland games.
The Broncos-Colts game (which Denver won 25-13) had tickets available for as little as $5 on the ticket resale site Vivid Seats, according to USA Today.
The Cardinals-Redskins and Ravens-Browns games, both of which take place Sunday, had many tickets listed for $6 on StubHub as of Saturday.
The common denominator between all three of these NFL games is that they feature home teams that are out of playoff contention after struggling through disappointing seasons. Still, $5 for NFL tickets is not a good look.
For this to come near the end of an NFL season that has seen TV ratings continue to slide and noticeably more empty seats in stadiums across the country has to be a real concern for the NFL.
The timing is especially notable considering Commissioner Roger Goodell just signed a massive five-year contract a week-and-a-half ago. Goodell’s extension was criticized by countless players and members of the media, and news like this will only hurt the longtime commissioner’s already damaged reputation.
— Jerry Fuhrman (@JerryFuhrman2) December 16, 2017
The beauty of secondary ticket websites like StubHub and Vivids Seats is that they can give us unfiltered insights that only pure capitalism can provide. Why are tickets listed for $5 and $6? Because the current owners of said tickets are trying to get rid of them, and no one is willing to pay more. It’s a perfect indicator of supply and demand.
While it’s abundantly clear demand for certain NFL tickets is extremely low, it’s not as obvious what factors are causing that. It’s true that these three games are all fairly meaningless, but that’s nothing new. Every year there are meaningless games at the end of the season when many teams are out of playoff contention.
It’s likely that the growing negative sentiment toward the NFL has played a role in crushing demand to basement levels. Between disgust with players protesting during the national anthem and a generally lower quality on-field product, many stalwart fans have become disenchanted with the league.
The calls for a boycott have been frequent and loud, and it seems they have done some damage to the league.
NFL Tickets Are Selling Below $5! #Winning
— DeplorableMe (@TwittToday69) December 9, 2017
It be a good thing, the NFL product is terrible. I rather watch high school football.
— UTEP_MINERO (@JoeJohnSr) December 16, 2017
Unfortunately for the NFL, there will be even more of these meaningless games in the final two weeks of the regular season.