Jets put more single-game tickets on sale with Opening Day blackout looming

The fallout from the New York Jets PSL pricing mishap continues: The team just put on sale 2,000 upper-deck seats for next week’s opening-day game that became available after ticketholders there decided to upgrade to lower-deck seats after the team slashed the prices of personal seat licenses for those seats in June.

All of which wouldn’t be of concern to anyone outside the Jets ticket office, except that, of course, the NFL requires TV blackouts of games with unsold seats remaining, which means Jets fans will remain on edge until a sellout is officially certified. And it could be an issue for upcoming games as well: The Jets have about 16,000 unsold seats total available right now, though the lack of a PSL requirement might make the $105-and-up price tag attractive to single-game buyers.

Jets officials, meanwhile, continue to insist that they’ll be sold out for the season, and that PSL sales are now “nearly complete.” Which may be true, but they’re cutting it awful close — though I guess cutting it close is the best way to make sure you’re squeezing every available dollar out of your fan base, rather than setting prices low enough to sell out easily and leaving cash on the table.

6 comments on “Jets put more single-game tickets on sale with Opening Day blackout looming

  1. If it’s only 2,000 seats (minus whatever they sell in a week), the Jets (or the TV station airing the game) will guarantee the NFL their 40% share of the unsold tickets and the game will be aired. Same thing frequently happens in Oakland with the Raiders.

  2. Oh, in effect buy the tickets from themselves? Yeah, that makes sense.

    So 40% of 2,000 seats at $100 a ticket would be what, $80,000? The Jets can certainly afford that.

  3. If they’re unsold, they’re unsold – and the NFL millionaire team owners have no business demanding that a municipality – or the local media – eat those tickets.

    Consider that the NFL clears about $4 BILLION DOLLARS every year in broadcast royalties alone. The pile gets divvied up 32 ways. That’s ***$125 MILLION per NFL Millionaire per year*** (Sports Business Daily tracks this stuff to death, believe me.).

    Now, note that Lucas Oil Stadium was half-full when the Niners played the Colts back on 8/14 (ESPN), and that the Oakland Coliseum was half-full when the Niners played the Raiders on 8/28 (Purdy, MercuryNews, 8/29).

    See the problem? The NFL itself is even predicting even more empty seats this season.

    On a local level, I just can’t wait to see eager Niner fans paying $5,000 to $10,000 for their PSLs – then their season tix – here in Santa Clara.

    And with that, a speculation: Imagine THOSE games blacking out.

    Anyone here really believe that the 49ers front office is going to get the Mercury News and NBC-11 to suck up THOSE unsold seats?

    Bill Bailey, Treasurer,
    Santa Clara Plays Fair


  4. I don’t think there’s any demand or inclination that a municipality will eat them (I don’t believe that they have a Charger-type agreement with East Rutherford or whatever).

    I don’t think there’s a demand that the TV station eat them. However, the TV station will make more money on ads by carrying the Jets game than whatever game they’re forced to show if the Jets are blacked out. The NFL allows the blackout to be lifted if the NFL’s share of the face value of the unsold tickets (I believe it’s 40%) is guaranteed by somebody (either the team that hopes to save face by avoiding a blackout or the station trying to make more money off of local ads). So it may be in the station’s interest to buy up the tickets and make more money off the ads.

    Currently in the Bay Area, Raider games that are close to selling out are usually guaranteed by the team and/or station in this manner (I’ve heard through the grapevine that the 49ers do this too, although I’ve never seen it discussed officially as they’re probably hush-hush about it if it does occur). If the game is within a few thousand, it’ll probably be on TV. If it’s 10 or 20,000 away, forget about it.

  5. Quite a few Raider home games are blacked out in the Bay Area. I’d guess at least half over recent years.

    The 49ers have a long streak of not having games blacked out, although in recent years someone was buying unsold tickets in bloc right before the cutoff so the game would be televised.

    Personally I think the blackout rule is stupid and counter-productive.

    I agree with Bill that PSLs are going to be a hard sell for the 49ers because fans have never had to purchase them in the past (although I wouldn’t read too much into the pre-season game attendance–fans know these “games” aren’t worth showing up for).

    The voters and city council of Santa Clara have stupidly agreed to accept the PSL risk though the formation of the municipal stadium authority. I’m convinced few people voting for the stadium understand this risk.

  6. The Jets will buy up unsold seats to lift any local blackouts (per New York Post, 9/6). The Jacksonville Jaguars did that for their two preseason games.