For tens of millions of Americans, there’s nothing better than spending 12 hours or so every Sunday sitting at home watching NFL games on TV. That’s great for the NFL’s bottom line.
But the ideal situation for the NFL is for those home viewers to be watching games played in sold-out stadiums. And NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says he’s concerned that so many people enjoy the TV experience — especially as more and more people buy high-definition televisions — that fewer fans are willing to buy tickets to watch the games in person.
“One of our biggest challenges in the league is the experience at home,” Goodell said. “HD is only going to get better.”
Goodell made his comments before a group of Falcons fans in Atlanta, where the team and the league are asking for the city’s help in building a new stadium to replace the Georgia Dome. Goodell said that a good facility is the key to keeping the fans coming, but his statement raises an obvious follow-up question: If the fans are already perfectly happy to watch at home, and HD TV is only going to keep improving and keep making the at-home experience better, why should the fans support the use of taxpayer money to build a stadium?
As it is, many fans see no reason to spend their tax dollars or their disposable income to support watching games from the stands because they’re perfectly happy watching games from their couches.