The Packers franchise is awash in cash
The NFL is big business and recent reports of what NFL teams were given, in terms of just TV money alone, is jaw-dropping.
According to the Packers their overall bottom line was +$35 million. They took a rather large loss on their ‘investment fund’ (20 million) and also continue to buy up land and property around Lambeau Field which comes at some additional expense. $35 million in total profit is still a big number. The bigger number comes from the TV revenue.
The Packers, according to multiple sources, received $374.4 million dollars in TV money for the 2022-23 season. Overall the NFL paid out $12 Billion dollars to its member franchises in TV cash.
Considering the team spends roughly $500 million a year in total expenses (player salaries, keeping the lights on etc) that covers a pretty big chunk. And again, there are other moving parts to all of this (investment fund, Titletown, rising NFL salary CAP, etc).
As the country’s only publicly owned sports team so much of this information is, well, public. Without a single owner looking to drive a profit, the returns on these investments should ideally be returned to the fans. Right?
Could the Packers lower ticket prices?
Simply put: absolutely. Or at least they could certainly justify freezing them.
But in a more complicated response, probably not. Ticket prices can fluctuate wildly in the secondary market (thank you Taylor Swift for giving us hundreds of examples.) By charging what they charge the organization hopes to keep the value at/around what should be expected you’d pay to see an NFL game. Overall Packer ticket prices are certainly better than the Raiders ($500 a game) but not as cheap as the Texans ($82 a game). The numbers here are taken from the 2021-2022 NFL season.
Some reports have the Packer game day experiences sitting at a solid “16”, right smack dab in the middle of what it costs to attend an NFL game.
Why does that matter? Who cares about the secondary market? Well, home fans should. The Packers, according to Finance Buzz, rank second in terms of “road ticket price cost” for fans wanting to come visit Lambeau ($276). So, with Lambeau field as a “destination stadium” similar to a Fenway Park or ‘Field of Dreams’, people are willing to pay more for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Again what seems like a move that would be really nice for Wisconsin and local fans ($25 tickets anyone?) would probably be a negative experience with so much of that revenue being gobbled up by the secondary market.
Christmas Day TV Viewership as a litmus test
For many Wisconsinites Christmas Day 2022 was a pretty awesome sports day. With a noon Packer Game and a 4pm Bucks Game, sports were on throughout many televisions as families visited one another for the holiday. Christmas Day games for the NBA are marquee games and always feature top match-ups. For the NBA the Celtics vs Bucks game was a premiere showdown.
According to FOS (Front Office Sports) the TV numbers were overwhelming in the NFL’s favor. According to their numbers, it wasn’t even close. The NFL continues to attract 7x what the NBA does. MLB baseball isn’t even close. The NFL is king when it comes to sports content.
The Bucks game drew over 6 million views, the most watched Christmas NBA game. The Packers-Dolphins game drew over 25 million tv viewers. For the NFL the Packers vs Dolphins certainly would not have been considered a “marquee match-up”.
The Final Verdict
The NFL is king. And after you pay out $12 Billion dollars in TV revenue (the State Budget for the entire state of Wisconsin sits around $19 Billion dollars) you can certainly afford to wear a pretty nice crown.
Or at least buy up all the land around your stadium and create your own town: Titletown.
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