A 14-year playoff drought has done little to quell the enthusiasm of Buffalo Bills fans, who are buying season tickets for the 2014 season at a brisk pace.
The club reported this past week that it's already surpassed the 44,000-ticket plateau. That's the most sold since 55,194 were sold in 2009 and the 13th time in the team's 54-year history it's toped 44,000. Three months remain in the season-ticket purchasing window.
"We walk about the excitement both on the field and off the field, and I think one of the biggest signs of the off-the-field excitement is our season ticket number," Bills Chief Marketing Officer Marc Horan said during a tour this past week of renovations at Ralph Wilson Stadium. "I think it really shows the level of commitment our fans have and, more importantly, the level of excitement about the team this season."
Single-game seats have remained hard for the team to sell, especially late in the season when the games are often rendered meaningless by the team's record. The Bills were one of only two teams, along with the San Diego Chargers, to have a home game blacked out last season. Buffalo also had two blackouts in 2012, two in 2011 and three in 2010.
The Bills were 19th in average attendance last season with 66,267 seats sold per game for the seven games at Ralph Wilson Stadium. That was the highest average since 2009, and that average went up in 2013 for the third straight season.
Among the renovations being done are the addition of new eateries and public restrooms, an enhanced scoreboard and larger entrance gates. A virtual tour of the renovations is available online.
Here are the Bills' season-ticket totals for the previous 10 years:
- 2013 – 42,450
- 2012 – 43,265
- 2011 – 37,355
- 2010 – 43,925
- 2009 – 55,194
- 2008 – 56,011
- 2007 – 48,236
- 2006 – 43,187
- 2005 – 47,246
- 2004 – 42,553