SI.com: NFL makes new offer to fans shut out of Super Bowl
Fans react angrily after being told their tickets would not get them seats inside the stadium for the Super Bowl.
February 9th, 2011
12:17 PM ET

SI.com: NFL makes new offer to fans shut out of Super Bowl

Imagine traveling thousands of miles, shelling out even more dollars and getting to the Super Bowl, arguably the biggest day of your life as a fan, only to find out that you don't have a seat.

That's exactly what happened to roughly 400 fans at Super Bowl XLV. Now, the NFL is sweetening its offer after robbing the group of its Super Bowl experience.

The 400 fans were forced to give up their seats at last week's Super Bowl after fire marshals deemed a section of Cowboys Stadium incomplete and uninhabitable. The decision was made just hours before kickoff and left a large cluster of die-hard fans displaced and displeased.

The NFL originally offered to give ticket holders a refund of $2,400 - or three times face value of their tickets - but the fans' complaints grew louder and the NFL was forced to up the ante.

On Monday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell promised those fans a ticket to next year's Super Bowl in Indianapolis. But the fans - mostly Packers and Steelers enthusiasts - will be getting even more for their troubles now.

The NFL followed up Tuesday, announcing the 400 fans could choose from a ticket to any future Super Bowl, including next year's, along with airfare and hotel, or the original $2,400 payout.

"We had more time to think about how to create a broader range of options that would better recognize the deep emotional bond that fans have for their team," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello wrote in an e-mail to The Associated Press on Tuesday.

Here's what to watch tonight (all times Eastern):

Los Angeles Clippers at New York Knicks (7:30 p.m., NBATV)

After falling 101-85 to Orlando on Tuesday, Blake Griffin and the Clip Show take their act to Madison Square Garden to face the Knicks.

No. 20 North Carolina at No. 5 Duke (9 p.m., ESPN)

One of college basketball's greatest rivalries resumes tonight when the Tar Heels hope to avenge a season sweep by the Blue Devils last season. Duke (21-2) hosts UNC (17-5) at Cameron Indoor Stadium, where Duke has won 32 in a row.

By the numbers

2 - Three-pointers Celtics guard Ray Allen is short of Reggie Miller's career total of 2,560, the most in NBA history. Allen can break the record Thursday when Boston hosts the Los Angeles Lakers.

7 - Days the St. Louis Cardinals have left to reach a contract extension with three-time NL MVP Albert Pujols. The slugger said he would cut off contract negotiations for the season when he reports to training camp on February 16.

35 - Losses for the Cleveland Cavaliers in their last 36 games after losing an NBA-record 25th consecutive game Monday. The Cavs look to snap their streak tonight when they host the Pistons (7 p.m. ET).

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Filed under: Baseball • College basketball • NBA • Pro football • Sports
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. Thundercrunk

    so what if there is a lock out and no superbowl next year? then what? who is to say that the steelers/packers would make it back to the superbowl in the next 20 years? the bottom line is these fans were victims of fraud and the NFL is scrambling so they dont loose millions in law suits. if every fan sued for 5 grand, that would be a 2 million dollar gaffe. my team is the st louis rams and im a die hard football fan. if the rams make it to the superbowl, and i purchased a ticket and traveled cross country to see my team, and was herded up in a cage like cattle and denied access, i think i would be uncontrollable. giving me tickets to another superbowl w/ teams i dont care about would do nothing for me. there are alot of intangibles and life experiences here that u just cant put a price tag on.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave K.

      Best post so far,nicely said.

      February 9, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Cesar

    Now Pat, that's not very nice.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. machinehead

    Their greed merely emulates the whiny, overpaid players. No surprises, just listen to the whining there will be next year when the palyers aren't playing.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Shannon Nutt

    Go ahead folks, turn down the NFL's generous offer and take them to court...and then when a jury awards you the FACE VALUE of the ticket, and a few hundred in compensatory damages (which will be taken by your lawyers), the NFL (and the rest of us) will be laughing at you.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • It is only my thoughts

      Shannon let me start by saying I respect your thought process. But in the real world that is not the way things work. A jury of your peers will see this as fraud and or breach of contract and will award damages. The jury will see the deep pockets of the NFL and feel that they should be punished for this and they will get a good amount of money. The NFL knows this, that is why they are scrambling to settle now. Case in point is Liebeck v. McDonald's Restaurants where a woman in a car spilled hot coffee on herself. The woman tried to settle this directly with McDonalds for only $20,000 out of court. McDonalds said no and it went to court. The victim was awarded over 2.6 Million by a jury. McDonalds appealed and the case was then settled out of court for an undisclosed amount under $600,000.

      February 9, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • DJ

      I would hope that a jury wouldn't see this as parallel to the Liebeck case. In the case of Random Fans vs. NFL, we will have a question of damages (cost of ticket+missed work+travel expenses) and, apparently, an overwhelming sense of doom and dispair (based exclusively on the video interview footage with these fans). In the case of Liebeck vs. McDonalds, we had a corporation who knowingly, and by their own admission, repeatedly endangered health and safety of their customers by serving coffee at an "unconsumable" temperature. This negligence was not a one time oversight, or last minute call by a health and safety organization; Liebeck was able to produce over 700 claims of individuals being burned, including many cases of life-threatening third degree burns [as any third degree burns have the potential to be]. Through McDonalds employees' own testimony, she showed that though they were aware of physical dangers imposed by their choice to hold their coffee dangerously hot, the profit margin gained by being able to hold coffee for longer periods of time (and thus, reduce waste) was worth any costs. They clearly stated that they had no intent of altering their procedures.

      Knowingly endangering customers without remorse does not equal sad fans and an NFL commissioner who is definitely feeling the heat for his mistake.

      February 9, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • metmo

      Juries are quick to award for injustices against the working man by multi-billion dollar corporations. Especially when "the fraud" is easily proven. Put me on the jury. lol

      February 9, 2011 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. clos

    Do the math. 400 fans x $2,400 = $960,000. For less than the price of one 30 second Superbowl commercial, the NFL is gong to walk away clean.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • metmo

      Let's not forget to subtract the amount of money that they already collected for payment of the tickets. So you can knock of at least a third of that amount.

      February 9, 2011 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Tim

    Now that I think is a fair offer for getting stuffed on this year's game.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. It is only my thoughts

    I agree with the lawsuits that have been filed. The ticket sold is a contract between the NFL and the person buying that ticket. There was a story about a Steeler season ticket holder who paid $5000 for he and his wife to attend the game and was denied his seat. Seeing "your team" play in the superbowl is a rare event and to have the NFL fumble the ball like this is wrong. The NFL made MILLIONS of dollars on this event and what they are offering for those who took the time to travel to the event place for be turned away is wrong.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Craig

    Not good enough. Each respective fan should get complimentary season tickets to the team of their choice with the caviat of superbowl tickets should their team make it that far. They should also be refunded the cost of travel and lodging for the superbowl that they missed.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • ekford

      ...I like your idea! BUT not just season tickets, but GOOD SEAT season tickets. The kind you cant seem to purchase as they are all already taken.

      February 9, 2011 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • metmo

      Well the Steelers might have that amount of season tickets to shell out, but you won't find that many available at Lambeau field. The average wait on the list is 30-40 years. If you were to put your name on the list today, the wait would be about 90-100 years. And that is the actual list. Not some made up piece of crap like what the Redskins have.

      February 9, 2011 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • metmo

      Usually there are less than 100 season ticket seats that open up every year. People will their tickets to their children. Not just that – people will their spot on the WAITING LIST to their children. That's what it is to be a Packer fan. And that's why it is a big freaking deal that they were denied their Superbowl seats that they entered into a contract for.

      February 9, 2011 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Amy

    Coming from someone who went to this game and was able to sit in my ticket – this is not a resolution. This is only ONE issue with the game that day. There so many other mistakes that the NFL made. One to mention would be the dangerous mob of a line that they had to get into the stadium. People were having panic attacks from being in a crowd for 3 hours, having to relieve themselves in bottles or where they were standing, elderly who could not jump over the random fences and dumpsters that people were pressed up against. Why isn't the NFL at least acknowledging those conditions or apologizing for that. It was absurd and I will never attend another Super Bowl.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  10. 2X4

    Reminds me of grade school (1st grade). 400 patrons of sports opportunity. .... Probably all Steeler fans.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
  11. k

    they should take the Super Bowl in NY in 2014, those tickets are going to go for a fortune, they could always sell them on the aftermarket and make alot of money

    February 9, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • EMILY

      ...IF THERE ISN'T A BLIZZARD, LOL

      February 9, 2011 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jimvsmij

    This does not address the fact that the 400 missed a super bowl game between the packers and the steelers. Until the NFL can produce this again for them the NFL needs to keep them happy until that time, which means free regular and post season tickets, all NFL channels, and super bowl tickets every year that there is not a packers/stealer super bowl.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. KidSysco

    It is clear that the NFL does not care. They have millions more 'die-hard' fans where those ones came from. The NFL simply does not need to care about those 400 fans and they are willing to move on without them. If you don't like it, then stop patronizing the NFL. Do not take the free seat to the next super bowl, just get your money back and move on to another sport that will treat you as you expect, like UFC or Hockey, heck even College football.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. rob

    I think its great that NFL is stepping up to the plate but the owners of the stadium need to be the ones footing this bill also. They should have known how many seats they could sell and if a contractor wasn't going to have the section done on time, then the contractor is responsible also as they broke the contract to have it done by such and such a date.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. AndyTheGameInventor

    This is almost a fair offer on the part of the NFL. The air/hotel/ticklet offer covers what the fans paid for in the first place, making them whole. They should also received something for their inconveniece (and in some cases loss of income) in travelling to Dallas and not seeing the game. I think about $1,500 each would be reasonable. Fortunately the Steelers and Packers are both good teams and another Super Bowl trip for either team is a good possibility in the coming decade.

    February 9, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
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