Bengals sell out single-game tickets to Steelers, Cowboys games

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A year after the Bengals routinely played to thousands of fans disguised as empty seats, the home team can expect a full house or something close to it for at least two games.

The Bengals have announced that all single-game tickets have been sold for contests against the Steelers and the Cowboys.

“Single-game ticket sales have been quite strong,” Bengals ticket sales manager Andrew Brown said.  “Fans have reacted well to last year’s playoff season, and we have one of the most exciting home schedules in recent memory.  Demand for many games has been high, with Pittsburgh and Dallas leading the list.  We are also seeing good interest in the home opener against Cleveland, so it’s been a good first week of sales.  While we are out of the single-game tickets for Pittsburgh and Dallas, we can still accommodate fans through a limited number of packages and season tickets.”

This year, the Bengals’ slate of home games is more than “quite strong.”  In addition to the Steelers and Cowboys, the Bengals will host the Broncos and Peyton Manning, the Giants and Eli Manning, and the Ravens.  Otherwise ho-hum visits from the Raiders and Dolphins become must-see-in-stadium-TV with the presence of Carson Palmer and Chad Ochocinco on those rosters, respectively.

The only soft spot comes from the Browns.  But since that’s the home opener for a team that made the playoffs in 2011, tickets could move well for that one, too.

It creates quite a dilemma for owner Mike Brown, who can reduce the minimum percentage of non-premium ticket sales from 100 to as low as 85.  With teams that put the limit too low having to kick an extra 16 cents on the dollar to the league, look for Brown to opt to stay at 100 percent, or close to it, in 2012.