As Cincinnati heads into a home game with the Colts, one of the interesting subplots to the game will be the number of people in the stands. Once again, the game will not be sold out and will be blacked out locally for the third time this season. In the previous games, the Bengals have had about 20,000 empty seats in each contest. That’s a huge number. Certainly some of those people simply can’t afford tickets in today’s economy. And others are undoubtedly boycotting the team.
But those methods won’t work. According to statistics compiled by Forbes that were published in ESPN’s franchise ranking issue, the Bengals made about $49 million in profits last year. Think about that for a second. That’s a huge profit margin that will not be easily affected.
Even if ticket sales are down, even if people aren’t buying as many T-shirts, or hot dogs, or beer, Mike Brown will still make money. Brown might have his flaws as an owner, but he’s a genius when it comes to the business side of things. And he runs the Bengals with such stripped-down operations that boycotting the games might lower his profits, but they won’t eliminate them.
Even if a stadium is 2/3 full and Brown ends up with onlyy 2/3 of his profits from last year, he’s still taking home plenty of cash.
So my advice is this: if you want to attend the games, go!
Because boycotting them won’t make much of a difference.