Post Lockout, NFL Still Gouging Season Ticket Holders!

OK. I’m excited! Football season is upon us and I’m as happy as anyone that the NFL lockout has ended. No longer threatened are my annual Fall rituals of obsessing over two fantasy football teams, outguessing the field in three weekly pick ’em pools, and feeding my crack-like addiction to the NFL RedZone channel. And those guilty pleasures take a back seat to my family’s ritual of hopping a ferry boat each Seahawks’ Sunday to float the pond that is Puget Sound to attend each and every home game of my beloved, albeit emotionally abusive, hometown team.

Like many pro football fans, I don’t get too excited about, or put much stock in, NFL preseason games. However, one novelty about them I do enjoy is the prospect of watching a football game while sitting outdoors, at night, wearing shorts, a tank top, and flip-flops, without freezing my footballs off! Yeah, IN SEATTLE!! It’s happened before. It can happen again. And I can’t let the thought of it go. But I digress…

What I don’t dig is being forced to pay regular season prices for each of two home preseason games. Forced by my hometown team, courtesy of a league-wide NFL policy. All for the privilege of purchasing an entire season’s worth of tickets (at a slightly discounted rate off the single-game ticket price). Seriously? For PRESEASON FOOTBALL? Yeah. *sigh* That’s like paying full price admission to only watch batting practice at the #Mariners…..oh, but you get the right to spend that much again to actually watch the game tomorrow. It’s a dress rehearsal at opening night prices. C’mon, Man!

Meaningless football and sloppy play notwithstanding, these preseason tickets are for games played on non-customary days that start at odd times. These games are played during one of the busiest months of the year for many families. It’s the end of summer, when youth baseball tournaments are squeezed into the precious few remaining weekends of the break. Soccer tournaments are hitting full stride. Families are squeezing the last bit o’ fun out of the vacation season.

So, I ask, “Are you kidding me?” I can’t GIVE these tickets away, let alone could I muster the audacity to ask ANYONE to PAY me for them. I consider it a moral victory if I can simply avoid having the money I paid, at regular season prices, from going to waste altogether.

I’m not normally one to beat the “greedy billionaire owners/ungrateful players” drum. But would I like to see the NFL’s regular season expanded to eighteen games? ONLY if they simply make one of the existing two home preseason games count for each team WITHOUT tacking on another preseason dress rehearsal, for which I have to pay regular season prices. Somehow, I don’t see that happening. After all, they’re already getting their money as it is.

So, I guess I’m beating that drum.


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