One Group Pulling For The Vikings To Head To The Super Bowl: Ticket Brokers

January 16, 2018

The NFL’s version of the Final Four is set with Minnesota, Philadelphia, Jacksonville and New England each vying for a coveted spot in Super Bowl 52.  If the Vikings manage to get past the Eagles, it will be the first time in Super Bowl history that the host team will also be play in their host stadium and Super Bowl ticket prices are expected to be at a premium.  In 1979 and 1984 the Rams and the 49ers came close.  The Rams, with star players like Lawrence McCutcheon, Wendell Tyler and Vince Ferragamo played a de facto home game against Bradshaw’s Steelers at the Rose Bowl.  Of course, they lost 34-19.  (Who can win with Lawrence McCutcheon?)   In 1985, the 15-1 49ers, with Lott, Montana, Clark, and Roger Craig played the Dolphins at Stanford Stadium in Dan Marino’s first and only Super Bowl appearance and won convincingly.

Thirty-four years later, we have a situation that could set records for ticket pricing as this will be a true first for home field advantage.

Let’s set the scenario.  In the seventies, the Minnesota Vikings were the poster child for Super Bowl futility.
1970 – Loss
1974 – Loss
1975 – Loss
1977 – Loss

Four trips, no wins.  For fans not old enough to remember, the Vikings quarterback was Fran Tarkenton, a six-foot scrambling dart thrower that played with incredible heart and conviction. Unfortunately, he was heartless during the games that counted.  Exacerbating the pain for Vikings fans were years of near misses that hurt even worse:

1975 – Roger Staubach hits Drew Pearson for a 50 yard touchdown pass with 32 seconds left. Dallas beats Minnesota 17- 14 and this game is considered the birth of the Hail Mary.

1999 – Minnesota goes 15-1 sets a franchise record. Randall Cunningham is the comeback player of the year. Randy Moss plays video games against defenses.  True to Viking form, Gary Anderson misses a 38-yard field goal shot and the Vikings lose to the Falcons 30 to 27.  Cris Carter cries.

2009 – Brett Farve is on fire in the NFC Championship game against the Saints. With 2:42 left, they are in range for a game winning field goal but get called for 12 men in the huddle.  Favre throws a pick; the game goes to overtime and the Vikings lose 31 to 28. Cris Carter cries.

2010- The Metrodome roof collapses.

If it weren’t for Kirby Puckett, Prince and Jack Morris, Minnesota would set the standard for piss poor performance when it counts. Correction: I mean Minnesota would be the model for persistence and perseverance in the face of adversity.

In 2018, we sense divine change in the air.  Marcus Williams’ ghost tackle on Stefon Diggs in the home playoff win against the Saints, a second string QB leading the charge and a staunch Vikings defense has the state Minnesota believing this is the season.  So, the team at One Concierge conducted ad hoc polls of brokers nationwide to get a sense of how the secondary market would react to Minnesota making the Super Bowl.

The sentiment:   If Minnesota makes the Super Bowl, it has several things going for it that will make it a record breaking year for Super Bowl ticket prices.

  1. An above average number of Fortune 500 corporate headquarters (18).
  2. The ability to remove years of heartbreak (see above)
  3. A sense of destiny. (Stefon Diggs)

 

Our initial read is that prices for tickets on the secondary market will be up 30-35% versus last year.   A couple of ancillary factors are also in play that will impact travel packages and ticket prices for the 2018 Super Bowl:

  • Reduced demand for hotel rooms
    • The only data point we have on this is the 1984 Super Bowl. Unfortunately, Miami is not Pittsburgh nor Green Bay. Their fans do not travel well.
  • Increase in last minute corporate hospitality requests
    • Minnesota is home to 18 Fortune 500 companies. The home team making the Super Bowl would be a boon to corporate hospitality requests for in state and out of state guests and they will party like it is 1999.  With the town a buzzing, we expect a 15% – 20% increase in participation in Super Bowl activities.
  • Private jet charter demand down
    • With only one team traveling to the game, we expect private jet charters to be significantly down this year and weather may play in role in demand for jet charters.

Final take:  We firmly believe that if the Vikings make it to the Super Bowl, that travel firms and ticket brokers will price their Super Bowl packages very aggressively to capture the sentiment of championship hungry Viking fans and to offset lost hotel and flight revenue.  In our next piece, we will examine the impact of a Nick Foles lead Eagles team in the Super Bowl.

Feel free to contact us for more commentary and analysis on Super Bowl 52 as this is game is shaping up to be like no other in history.