The Vikings had until Friday to decide whether or not they would be taking advantage of the NFL’s new rule regarding blackouts, which allows teams to televise home games in their local markets if as few as 85 percent of the non-premium seats are sold, but they didn’t wait until the last second.
They announced their decision on Thursday and they’ve decided to join the Bucs, Dolphins and Raiders in adopting it. The Vikings have not gone for the minimum of 85 percent like those other teams, though. They have set their blackout threshold at 90 percent, reducing the burden of seats they need to sell by about 6,000 this season.
“It’s important for the Vikings to take advantage of a new policy that benefits our fans and helps us achieve our goal of having our games televised throughout Minnesota,” said Vikings Vice President of Sales and Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer Steve LaCroix. “Our focus remains on selling every seat in Mall of America Field, and we will continue to work hard to achieve that. This flexibility, however, puts us in a better position to have our home games are locally televised.”
The Vikings haven’t had much problem avoiding blackouts in the past, so they could stand to lose 16 cents on every dollar of revenue if they are able to sell those 6,000-odd seats. Given the stadium deal that they just got with the help of public money and support, that’s a price they’re probably willing to pay to avoid creating an upset among their benefactors because of untelevised games this season.