The NFL’s much-anticipated 100th season kicked off on Thursday, with the Green Bay Packers topping their division rivals, the Chicago Bears, in a sleepy season opener.
The low-scoring Bears-Packers face-off saw a big jump in ratings compared to 2018 — a reflection of increased fan interest after a pre-season filled with twists and trades.
Along those lines, SeatGeek Co-Founder Russ D’Souza told YFi PM they’ve seen some “notable trends” in ticket sales this season.
“The big teams, the one’s that you’d expect to have a lot of demand, the Dallas Cowboys, the New England Patriots, those teams are really doing well,” he said.
In fact, SeatGeek found NFL tickets to be the most in-demand of any of the major sports league in the United States, with an average ticket for the 2019 season going for $244.
The league has shifted how fans are able to access tickets, with stadiums adapting to a fully digital ticketing system for the upcoming season. Yet SeatGeek, which launched its ticketing app back in 2012, initiated the mobile ticketing trend.
D’Souza told Yahoo Finance that because mobile makes tickets so easy to purchase, “fans are willing to buy tickets later.”
“It’s just a few taps on your phone on SeatGeek and your tickets are delivered right there,” he said. “We see half our transactions happening a week before the event [or] 24 to 36 hours before the event, we see a quarter of our transactions happen.”
D’Souza added that “Even for really expensive tickets, fans are totally comfortable buying at the last minute.”
This week, SeatGeek launched the Fan-Driven NFL Stadium Guide to help with fan experience when attending a game.
The survey of more than 3,200 fans found that the best stadium atmosphere went to the Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs, and New Orleans Saints.
D’Souza told Yahoo Finance that “fans, when they’re looking to go attend an NFL game, part of it is, these tickets are expensive, you want to know a bit more about what you’re getting into.”
McKenzie DeGroot is a producer at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @degrootmckenzie