“Financial Incentives” For Playing In England

October 19th, 2011

While some fans are giddy about the Bucs playing a” home” game in London on Sunday, therefore avoiding a local TV blackout, others are bitter at the loss of the treasured home game experience. And there are plenty of businesses around Tampa that are hurt by the lost game.

Fans have heard various reasons from Bucs officials why playing in London is a great idea for the team, but one reason wasn’t among the Bucs’ public position. That would be that it’s a good deal financially.

Tampa Tribune beat writer eye-RAH! Kaufman brought that to light today. Kaufman talked to Roger Goodell, who told Kaufman the NFL makes it attractive to take a home game to England. 

Goodell acknowledged the league offers “financial incentives” for clubs willing to switch a home game overseas.

Now maybe the Bucs really don’t care about the “financial incentives” related to a home game in England. Heck, Mark Dominik told Sky Sports yesterday that the London experience is excellent Super Bowl preparation and the Bucs jumped at the chance.

“I think Wembley absolutely epitomises all of those things that you want to get ready for when you go play a Super Bowl,” he said.

“When the opportunity came up that we could go back to Wembley we quickly grabbed it and said yes.

But Joe’s not naive. The NFL is all about money. The league is only in England to make more money, and it’s a safe bet to assume the Bucs are there for the same reason.

23 Responses to ““Financial Incentives” For Playing In England”

  1. Garv Says:

    Super Bowl preparation? Don’t you have to GET to the Super Bowl first?
    How does taking away a home field advantage and travelling across the freaking OCEAN help the Buccaneers in ANY way, shape or form OTHER than the Royal Glazerbaums themselves?

    Season ticket holders, long time cash providers to the team, the owners and those with long time loyalty got SCREWED! The fans, the players, the stadium workers, local businesses…….. everyone got SCREWED but for the Royal Glazerbaums and EVERYONE KNOWS IT!

    That LAME “reason” about getting another game on television? PLEASE! Sunday’s game was a near sellout and the Royal Glazerbaum’s could have easily bought up the remaining tickets if they were anything about goodwill.

    OK, breathing easier now.

  2. Mauha Deeb Says:

    I don’t understand how an away game hurts local businesses. It seems that if the game is away, less people will be spending money at the stadium thereby leaving more money in the pockets of the citizenry to spend on the actual local businesses, not global ones like the NFL.

  3. Tommy Boy Says:

    I thought money would never be an issue?

  4. Rich Says:

    my only issue is. Knowing that your fan base is for lack of a better term, “Slipping away”. Hence the blackouts. Dont you think moreso than for financial reasons, and for “super bowl prep” that maybe the team should stick around and take advantage of every real HOME game they can get??

    I feel like although i will always love this team…its reasons like this why the fan base is “slipping away” in the first place. Put the fans as a priority and let them see that they are, and maybe theyll come watch you play every week.

    Thats my rant. Thanks.

  5. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Garv The last game had roughly 57,000 tickets sold. All of the $35 ones were sold out. So that leaves roughly 8,000 unsold tickets, none of which are the cheap ones.

    So lets low ball it and estimate that the average price for those remaining tickets is $80 a piece. $80 X 8,000 = $640,000.

    Lets say the rest of the home games are just as close. $640,000 X 4 = $2,560,000.

    There is no business in their right mind that would forfeit $2,560,000 of pure profit for four games. Especially when they did something similar, albeit less money in 2009 for all 8 games.

  6. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    @Mauha Deeb — One example, the Bears would have traveled a lot of fans. For example, Joe knows of three hotels around the stadium that were filled with Saints fans last Sunday.

  7. Mauha Deeb Says:

    “I thought money would never be an issue?”

    As if this isn’t a business. That statement refers to team roster, not concessions, parking, ticket sales, ad rev, NFL rev etc. If it did refer to those things, tickets would be on a good will donation basis and I would probably be on the team making $10.00/hr.

  8. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    @Mauha Deeb — Keep in mind only non-premium seats (non-club seats) have to be sold to avoid a blackout. There are 12,000 of those club seats. So if half those seats were sold, then you could shave off 6,000 seats from the total additional needed to be sold in stadium.

  9. Mauha Deeb Says:

    I understand that concept, but, if the hotels don’t take in the money, the other businesses will ( local small business restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations for beer, etc) The money would still be spent.

    On another note, I wish I could travel to away games. Perhaps the Jacksonville trip is in order.

  10. Paul W. Says:

    Glazer jumped at the opportunity to parade his little american football team around for all his English friends to guffaw at, and is making a pretty penny too.

  11. notrepidation44 Says:

    This year I must admit I was very disappointed in playing in London again. After calming down and thinking about it, I do feel it was the right choice as business owners who are struggling to sell out the stadium.

    Then this year we are hearing rumors this may be a yearly trip for the Buccaneers. While I would not want to make a yearly trip to London, I could get on board for a every other year trip. I think the game could help the Bucs down the road since they will be used to the trip, and hopefully if they are the “annual” team they get some input on who they want to play there.

    As a fan, I can see where those will enjoy the London game because the game is on TV, or in my perspective a chance to go visit another country and get to watch the Buccaneers in the process.

  12. RustyRhino Says:

    Who is the dude with the JCPennys jacket in the photo??? Didn’t he get the memo to wear the Mens Warehouse jackets? A blue shirt blue tie when everyone else is in white with a red tie. That man needs a raise.

  13. Mauha Deeb Says:

    When you say “non-club” you mean all those seats just above the handicap seating? That is considered premium? Oi.

    They looked pretty full to me, but I do not have the specifics so it could be as you said.

  14. Dave Says:

    Obvious reasons to me:
    1. Money
    2. Televised in local market
    3. Televised in national market
    4. Sucking up to get another SB in Tampa (failed)
    5. Money

  15. Bucs4life Says:

    So lets low ball it and estimate that the average price for those remaining tickets is $80 a piece. $80 X 8,000 = $640,000.

    Lets say the rest of the home games are just as close. $640,000 X 4 = $2,560,000.

    There is no business in their right mind that would forfeit $2,560,000 of pure profit for four games. Especially when they did something similar, albeit less money in 2009 for all 8 games.

    @ Mauha

    Man, I really hope you don’t have any position of importance in business. $2.6 million bucks (less than Earnest Graham’s salary) is a relative drop in the bucket for the Glazers when you consider it would allow their “business” (the Bucs) to showcase its product (games) to its market (Tampa). Plenty of businesses “forfeit pure profit” to better market and increase exposure of their products, there’s an entire industry that helps companies spend their money for this reason. The cheesy cliche holds true, “you need to spend money to make money.” That said, I believe the Glazers are allowing the blackouts as they believe the team is improving at such a rate that fans and local businesses will be compelled to attend games since they can’t watch them at home. I just thought I’d point out that your analysis was worthless.

  16. TCK Says:

    Yes the hotels lose out on some money. But on the other side of it I bet alot of local sports bars get more business by being able to show the game. Yes it suck for season ticket holders to miss out on a game. But the majority of fans probaly like the fact they get to watch it on TV.

  17. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    In simpler terms, a road game with a popular team like the Bears is like losing a medium-sized convention coming to town. It’s a loss.

    @Mauha Deeb — From the stadium website: “Raymond James Stadium features more than 12,000 club seats that allow spectators to experience games and events in utmost comfort. The extra-wide, padded seats run parallel to the sidelines. The seats are accessible from a luxurious, air-conditioned concourse that features restaurants, sports bars, video walls, lounge seating and additional views of the field.” … … It’s been widely reported these seats don’t count toward blackouts. That’s leaguewide.

  18. FloridaGirl Says:

    No surprise they took the money for the overseas game. Not only do existing season ticket holders have to pay the price for the game, but the Bucs reap the financial windfall from the NFL incentive program. With blackouts all last year and probably 3/4 games blacked out this year, there’s no reason not to take them. To appease season tix holdes in exchange for my ticket to the Bears game I paid for, I got an invite from the Bucs to watch the ‘International Series’ game in the club section. Not an even trade by any stretch of the imagination.

  19. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Bucs4Life I am in fact a business man. A very good one.

    So, you believe that what I wouldn’t do and what the Glazers didn’t do is the wrong business decision? They are multi-billionaire business men and you think you know better than them?

    My analysis was fine and apparently the Glazers agree. The compulsion theory is nice, but it is not true. The reason tickets are selling again is because fans are finely getting acclimated to a new team and that new team is winning football games consistently.

    Try again.

  20. Mauha Deeb Says:

    @Bucs4Life Glazers pumped out cash for two years straight, and what happened afterwards? An entire season of blackouts. What is the point of “marketing” your product if fans aren’t willing to come in the first place. You need to incentivize your fans to come to the games. How do you do that? You build a winner. The Glazers suffered for two year while rebuilding the team and it is on the way back up. Their plan worked regardless of blackouts. Why? Because the Bucs are winning. No one wants to spend $125 to watch their team lose.

    People can watch the games regardless of the blackouts anyways. I can name 5 bars within 6 miles of me that have aired every single black out game since last year. Your compulsion theory has an extremely minute impact at best.

    It is as simple as pie, my friend.

  21. McBuc Says:

    @Bucs4life…I will add to Mr. Deeb…2.5 million is a great deal of money regardless of the size and profitability of your business. I do not know any business that is willing to part with that much money on a regular basis. My job before this one was negotiating contracts with my company and others. I dealt with many fortune 500 companies. I find, the bigger and richer the organization, the harder it is to get them to spend money. The “drop in a bucket” theory is never accurate. If I owned a company with net sales of 120 million, and someone marketing dude came to my office and said ‘We can run this add, it is a really good one, and it is only $125,000. Don’t worry, that is the Director of Sales annual salary, a drop in the bucket to you.” I might fire him. It is always easy to spend someone else’s money.

    All you guys moaning about the Glazers wanting to make money…Welcome to Capitalism, why do you think they are in business? If you dislike the concept so much, I am sure you can find a country where everyone works for the common goal, Try heading south from Miami.

  22. patrickbucs Says:

    Mauha Deeb Says:There is no business in their right mind that would forfeit $2,560,000 of pure profit for four games. Especially when they did something similar, albeit less money in 2009 for all 8 games

    That season they had 7 home games (1 in London against Pats). They sold out or close to it without help or very little from the Glazers for the Cowboys, Giants, Packers (throwback game, 1st Freeman start and 1st win of season), Jets, and Saints. You can tell when the stadium is packed or very full. Two games they did for sure against Carolina after an 0-6 start and were playing Carolina also 0-6 or so at that time. Never have I seen so many open seats in the stadium besides pre-season. I’m not so sure the Glazers should regularly give away 2,500 plus general seats away to avoid blackouts. That’s really up to them, but it’s a large negative locally and nationally.

    They need to lower their upper deck pricing, not sure thats debatable. Someone posted a few days ago about the pricing in a number of other stadiums for this weeks game and was much lower then ours. I’m not sure they can do it this year because it’s not really fair to season ticket holders such as myself but has to be addressed in the offseason.

  23. bucs4life Says:


    Right, I have no doubt you’re an extremely successful and dilligent business person as evidenced by your almost constant posting on a fan football website. You’re obviously a very effective time manager. Moreover, your telling me to “try again” was an effective means of addressing the argument.

    You simpletons throw around $2.6 million like it’s some enormous amount of money for any business. $2.6 mil isn’t even a rounding error for Exxon Mobil, Microsoft, Apple, P&G, etc…

    The Glazers aren’t avoiding to pay for the tickets because of the cost (Mauha conveniently pointed out they’re savvy businessmen with a billion dollar enterprise, so 2 mil ain’t exactly breaking the bank), they’re not paying for tickets because, in their view, it reinforces bad behavior (fans opting to watch at home instead of shelling out the cash) and because it’s clear the team’s popularity continues to ramp with victories, so they might as well wait for the blackouts to resolve themselves organically.

    Mauha claims popularity is growing because the town has become acquainted or comfortable with the new regime; what % of Bucs fans in Tampa could name more than two offensive players? The average “fan” knows the Bucs are doing well and they’ve got a big qb named Freeman.

    Please refrain from ASININE (had to give you a shout out, Joe) analysis. I know you like to consider yourself the authority around here, but you’re simply a loud talking clown.