The League

Brandon Benson
Packers Blogger

Brandon Benson

Brandon Benson is the lead blogger at Acme Packing Company.

Ticket uptick


The Green Bay Packers are in a unique situation when it comes to looking at a possible expansion of the NFL's regular season. With 83,000 fans on the season ticket waiting list, expanding to 18 games could turn a number of fans into new season ticket holders. While I have no inside knowledge about this idea, it's possible they could decide to create a third package of season ticket holders. For those not familiar with Packer season tickets, they currently have two packages: the Green package and the Gold package. The Gold package is comprised of former Milwaukee County Stadium season ticket holders (which hosted home Packer games from 1953 to 1994). They receive two regular season tickets, while the Green package holders receive the other six. Could they take away one from the Green package to make a new two game package? Such an idea would upset a lot of Green package holders, but it could really make a dent in the waiting list. How determined is the front office to reduce the wait for season tickets?

Obviously an 18 game schedule has a lot of appeal to NFL owners. Even in Green Bay, where 40,000 to 50,000 fans turn out for an annual scrimmage during the first week of training camp, preseason games don't have the same excitement. Fans might spend more money (i.e. drink more beer) in the stadium during an interesting regular season game. Also, the possibility of a third package of season tickets might create more seat license money. Since the Packers don't have any problem with sellouts, this issue might not be as important for them compared to some teams that struggle to sellout even their regular season games. But I can still see how they could make more money off it.

From everything I've read on the players side, they are opposed to the 18 game schedule. And I can certainly see their point of view. It's not just that the games are more intense and the starters would have to play two more full games vs. limited playing time in two existing preseason games. Right now, the Packers can hold out players with minor injuries (if they could possible aggravate them). And they can give their veterans some practice time off so they don't wear out under the hot August sun. But if they had two more regular season games, then they would have to practice all week, and have two extra weeks of game preparation and film study. Most players wouldn't complain about it publicly, but it's certain to take an extra toll on them physically and mentally. Knowing what two extra regular season games would mean for the players, and knowing they are unlikely to receive raises solely for these two extra regular season games, I wouldn't complain at all if the players squashed the idea of an 18 game schedule.

But realistically, I expect someday to be watching 18 regular season games.

By Brandon Benson  |  August 31, 2010; 11:52 AM ET  | Category:  Collective Bargaining Agreement , Competition Committee , Green Bay Packers , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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