We like Jacksonville. We really do. But we can’t pretend not to notice that, for whatever reason, the city can’t or won’t sufficiently support an NFL team.
And with a distinct vibe developing that the 7-5 Jaguars will be unable to sell out next Thursday night’s home finale against the currently undefeated Colts, it’s time for owner Wayne Weaver and the other 31 franchises to consider moving the team to a place where the stadium will sell out on a consistent basis.
According to Larry Hannan of the Florida Times-Union, the local group aimed in the 1990s at bringing an NFL team to Jacksonville and reconstituted recently to help keep the team there is claiming that it has not tried to engineer a sellout for the December 17 game.
Which tells us that they know a sellout is, at this point, an uphill climb.
“Selling out the Thursday game is not the goal,” Lenny Curry of Touchdown Jacksonville told the Times-Union. “We want to sell as many tickets as we can but the focus is on getting people to come down.”
Meanwhile, the City of Jacksonville plans to spend roughly $150,000 on a four-hour pregame party aimed at getting more people to the venue.
Here’s a thought. Why not spend that cash instead on buying any remaining non-premium tickets to the game, and then giving the tickets to local charities?
We realize that there are plenty of people in Jacksonville who are passionate about the Jaguars. Most American cities that don’t have an NFL team likely would be able to muster the same zeal from a segment of the population.
But it’s now clear that, in Jacksonville, not enough people care. And so it’s time for the team and the league to move the team to a place where enough people will.