Colts COO Says National Anthem Protests A Factor In Poor Season-Ticket Sales
Coming off a 4-12 season where starting QB Andrew Luck didn’t play a down, there’s not much excitement going around Indianapolis in regards to football and it shows with fans reluctance to renew their season tickets.
Those bad season ticket sales can also be contributed to the fact that several members of the team kneeled during the National Anthem last season, at least according to Pete Ward.
The Indianapolis Colts chief operating officer essentially blames the team’s poor season ticket sales on player protests that have now spanned two years.
“I’m unable to quantify a number, but it is a factor – to some extent – in our renewals,” he told Scott Olson of the Indianapolis Business Journal.
82 percent of season tickets have been sold for the upcoming season, which is down from the renewal rate of 87 percent the club had at the same point a year ago.
Missing the playoffs for three straight years and the firing of fan favorite Chuck Pagano are also contributing factors, but still, Ward said a number of fans have told team officials they’re giving up their season tickets because of the anthem demonstrations.
Ultimately, the uncertainty surrounding Andrew Luck and his health might be the biggest contributing factor as fans don’t want to pay top dollar to see a back-up QB struggle and lead the team to the terrible record they had just last season.