Colts blame reduced season ticket renewals on poor play, anthem protests

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Last year, the Colts had an 87-percent renewal rate for season tickets. This year, the rate dropped to 82 percent.

If my math is correct (and it almost never is), the Colts have lost in two years 29.66 percent of their season-ticker holders as of 2016.

The Colts are blaming this year’s reduction on two things. Via the Indianapolis Business Journal, Colts COO Pete Ward said that it’s a result of the team’s performance and national anthem protests.

It’s a convenient excuse, and probably an overstated one. Roughly 10 Colts took a knee during the anthem two days after President Trump’s notorious “get that son of a bitch of the field” rant regarding protests during the anthem. Two weeks later, when Vice President Mike Pence stormed out of a 49ers-Colts game, only 49ers players were taking a knee.

But while the Colts lost roughly 3,000 2017 season-ticket holders, they added 1,330 new season-ticket holders — more than twice the amount than the Colts sold last year.

So the net (again, my math is questionable) is a drop of 1,670. Which isn’t bad for a 4-12 team that either recklessly or deliberately lied to the fan base throughout the 2017 offseason regarding whether quarterback Andrew Luck would be ready to go as of Week One or, you know, Week 17.

Given the 12 losses and the more-than-12 lies, a drop of only 1,670 season tickets should be regarded a cause for celebration. Instead, it’s an occasion to once again boil down the anthem issue to a bad-for-business dynamic.

If the Colts want to believe that 2018 is a very consisting of good business performance, they’ll need to sell roughly 12,000 tickets for each of their 10 home games. That will be easier to do if Luck plays or, more accurately, if the customers can be persuaded to believe that he will.

Again.

36 responses to “Colts blame reduced season ticket renewals on poor play, anthem protests

  1. So the Colts organization definitely doesn’t blame the Colts organization. Good call, that would almost make them look bad.

  2. Oh please, yeah, let’s blame it on the anthem business. What a crock.

    Maybe those fans felt like they had been dealing with the Flim Flam man the past couple of year where they were more likely to see their QB on “Unsolved Mysteries” than on a football field.

    The team’s shifting explanations, excuses and false prognostications would have many folks giving up on the future of this team.

  3. Yeah, blame the players for shoddy play and taking a knee. Im sure it has nothing to do with the owner lying to their fans about their broken down over rated overhyped has been never was quarterback being ready to play.
    Nah, cant be that. Fans love being misled and ripped off.

  4. The air pressure in Luck’s shoulder varies with the temperature of Irsay’s drink.

  5. Well, if you can come up with a way the “protest” actually enhances the appeal of the game, or viewing experience of the public, maybe we could dismiss the chagrin of the NFL teams and their owners.

  6. I wouldn’t entirely dismiss the effect of the anthem protests, as many of us know people who (rightly or wrongly) refuse to attend/watch games because of it.
    That being said, their team was bad last year, and their QB hasn’t thrown a football since before Trump was president… so there may not be a ton of optimism when deciding whether to buy tickets.

  7. Florio, you still don’t understand the anthem issue and at this point you never will. Those of us who get it know that it doesn’t matter how many guys on X team we re kneeling. It matters what the team’s response was to the kneelers, how they handled it, etc. And not just the team, the entire league.

    We TOLD everyone this was going to hurt. Collectively, everyone laughed. Now it’s hurting, and everyone’s in denial.

    The Colts are right on the money. Those two reasons are EXACTLY why their ticket sales are down.

  8. My understanding from the league office is that double digit ratings and attendance drops are due to everyone switching to AOL dial up streaming. Most Americans would love to spend $200+ a ticket to see people protest them for being Americans, if only they could just find the time.

  9. Really? I’m thinking that just maybe, just maybe it had something to do with the Colt management lying to the ticket holders about Luck’s health and being able to play last season. It really doesn’t look like anything’s changed. Has he thrown this off season???? And I’m sure ticket prices, concession prices, parking, etc., etc. etc., had nothing to do with it either eh.

    Lets add it up.

    An awful team, with awful management, and outrageous prices. But its the anthem protests that are the problem. Seems like the NFL owners are the problem if you ask me. Billionaires that cant get out of their own way.

  10. I bet the Ravens renewals are well below 80%, probably close to 50%….just wish someone would release the #

  11. Here’s hoping the same thing happens to the Colts ownership that happened to that idiot at Papa John’s who blamed his mis-management losses on the protests.

  12. weepingjebus says:
    May 17, 2018 at 3:18 pm

    …. Most Americans would love to spend $200+ a ticket to see people protest them for being Americans, if only they could just find the time.

    =====

    America, where racism is so common, that when people protest racism, most people assume they are just protesting “being American”.

    Instead of doing something about racism, let’s blame the black people again, eh?

    It’s not like Andrew-Luck-jersey-wearing fans were disappointed with the last minute trade and performance of Joey Bag-of -Biscuits, right?

    Take you blinders off America. This whole anti-BLM movement is being fomented by Russian instigators, and Trump. Don’t accept that our neighbors and their teenage have to be afraid for their lives every time they have a taillight out. Do accept allowing your neighbors to be unfairly treated by law enforcement in those cases where it happens.

    Let’s demand better from the Colts on the field, and police who abuse their positions.

  13. The anthem protests, player holdouts, ridiculously high player salaries (especially those of QB’S), felony arrests, drug use, constant replay interruptions, and fleecing of the taxpayers are among the reasons why I am losing interest. When the baseball players went on strike in the 90’s, I left and never went back.

    It can happen to you too, NFL.

  14. Perhaps in the only person here who can read. They started two reasons. They did not chalk it up to protests. They said the teams performance as another reason. People do not want to pay money to see their flash disrespected by millionaires.

  15. Hmmm, I wonder of there are ticket issues in other cities where players protested? Philly? Seattle? San Francisco? I think not.

  16. “If the Colts want to believe that 2018 is a very consisting of good business performance,…”

    Trying to publish articles like most of your posters post again, Florio? Is this some secret language people here have I don’t know about? What the heck does “… a very consisting of good performance.” even mean?

  17. ….and yet the Carolina Panthers SOLD for close to 2.5 BILLION dollars!. Either the NFL is on the verge of collapse or is about to EXPLODE with unspeakable riches once leagalized betting happens. I’m gonna go with unspeakable riches and profits. The average fan doesnt matter anymore.

  18. Colts’ fans love their team, but if they don’t think the team is being 100% honest about the Andrew Luck injury situation, they won’t be as forgiving. Other stadiums are filling up despite the anthem protests, so that’s no excuse.

  19. Yes, I DO buy that the anthem issue is partly to blame.
    Indy is in the heartland aka “flyover country” for those elite people on the coasts.
    Therefore we have much different values than the liberal coasties, we are patriotic and take attacks on our freedoms and our flag very seriously.
    Union-protected players CHOSE to “protest” and teams will take a hit for not firing those players. THIS is what is happening to all NFL teams.
    Meanwhile the players who caused all this, multi-millionaires I might add, are protected by the NFLPA AND the left-wing media.

    Bottom line is this:
    1. Regular U.S. citizens value our flag and the police
    2. NFL players of the dark persuasion hate cops and want to make sure that black criminals don’t get caught so they protest the police.

    If blacks don’t like police using their authority then players need to convince the BLACK community to stop committing crimes, using drugs, etc. Only then will black interactions with the police, stop happening.
    But instead of using the right solution, black NFL players seek to enable criminals.
    Season ticket holders want these pro-criminal players fired.
    NFL teams are loathe to fire the “protestors” because they fear retribution, both legally from the union, and from the media.
    So season ticket holders and potential season ticket purchasers are telling the Colts AND every other NFL team how they feel by not buying tickets.

  20. Protests against our great country by a companies employees in front of their customers is always a great business move. NFL employee protesters, you are no longer welcomed in our homes on Sundays and we wait for our apology.

  21. America, where racism is so common, that when people protest racism, most people assume they are just protesting “being American”.
    ============
    You should travel more

  22. If you stop watching football because a few players silently knelt during a 2 minute anthem OR you stop watching because Kap isn’t employed… you’re not a real football fan.

  23. No reason to make up excuses. Everybody knows that ticket sales are directly tied to a teams success. The Jaguars removed tarps that had been in place for well over a decade.

    PS – Go Jags!

  24. Someone is going to have to explain to me why season ticket renewals decline when you put a crappy team on the field. Neither Colts’ management or I understand why.

  25. ringheadcrusher says:
    May 17, 2018 at 3:18 pm
    Florio, you still don’t understand the anthem issue and at this point you never will. Those of us who get it know that it doesn’t matter how many guys on X team we re kneeling. It matters what the team’s response was to the kneelers, how they handled it, etc. And not just the team, the entire league.

    We TOLD everyone this was going to hurt. Collectively, everyone laughed. Now it’s hurting, and everyone’s in denial.

    The Colts are right on the money. Those two reasons are EXACTLY why their ticket sales are down.

    ———————-

    So that explains why all teams had the same issue too. Oh wait, they didn’t so you don’t bring it up because it disproves your agenda. I don’t don’t knealing had an effect but it was a small one. The reasons this happened are because of the teams performance, their iffy future and the fact that the FO duped them in to thinking the star QB would play.

  26. There might be some anthem effect, but I guarantee renewals would be up, not down, if the Colts won 13 games last year. America may worship the flag, and America may have a ton of racists, but America most certainly will support a winner under both circumstances.

  27. As someone who attended every Colts game and never paid more than $10 for a ticket due to season ticket holders pretty much giving their tickets away after they got destroyed by the Rams in week 1 I blame fair weather fans just like I did during the suck for luck year.

    The Colts fans that did show up never made it to the fourth quarter. Pretty embarrassing to say the least. Watch Colts home games back and you’ll notice that it seemed like a home game for all their opponents since away fans are the only ones who showed up.

  28. Uhmm dryzzt23 you do understand that statistical study after statistical study refutes what you’ve claimed about LEO and their handling of minorities in America? In case you’ve not noticed, systemic racism is well entrenched in the USA.

    Back on topic, it is what can we expect from Ole Jim Hearsay Irsay. Was the one who led the charge that changed the rules to maybe help the Colts beat the Pats (ruining football fwiw) and 4 years ago who can forget his $30k in a laundry bag strung out on Oxy arrest?

  29. The NFL and not just the Colts have caused the problem. Joe Fan can’t afford not only the high ticket prices, but parking, concessions and merchandise are also through the roof. Plus the overall the game has declined with all the rule changes. It is no longer fun to watch.

  30. I was a longtime season ticket holder for the Colts from the days of the RCA Dome to the move to Lucas Oil Stadium.

    There are many reason I no longer have tickets.

    1) The quality of the NFL product in general. It’s just not as enjoyable to me as it once was.

    2) The quality of the Colts, I miss the Manning,Wayne,Freeney era Colts.

    3) The stadium is too sterile. It’s beautiful but it’s not loud. The RCA Dome was LOUD and you felt like part of the action. And no, it was not piped in noise, I spent plenty of time in the control booth the sound system there was basically an 8track with duct tape. They didn’t even remove the equipment when they imploded the place.

    4) Colts head coaches – SUCK, have since Dungy. Jury is out on Reich, I have some excitement about new GM and HC.

    5) Having to pay full price for 2 preseason games I’d never go to. I had good seats, $150 x 3, $900 for 2 games the real team wasn’t playing in? Nope, not anymore.

    The only way they get me back is to fix the preseason thing, and then put a quality product back on the field.

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