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Video From The 1st Annual Fantasy Football Fest in Atlantic City, N.J.

This past August, I was in Atlantic City to cover the inaugural Fantasy Football Festival, a one-of-a-kind fantasy football experience according to the organizers, ReedPOP.  This was the first time any festival or convention was organized and catered around fantasy football.

DSC_4086ReedPOP, the production company behind New York Comic Con (the largest pop culture convention on the east coast), PAX, PAX East, UFC Fan Expo,  & Star Wars Celebration organized the festival.  ReedPOP is dedicated to producing celebrations of popular culture throughout the world that transcend ordinary events by providing unique access and dynamic personal experiences for consumers and fans, is organizing the festival.

It took a while to get the videos edited as my editor was finishing up college and graduating.  I should be able to edit videos faster in the near future so everyone can experience the events closer to when they happened.  When the NFL Draft comes around in a few months, you will not have to wait long to see and listen to the 2013 NFL Draft prospects.

We has to break the footage into two videos.  The first video features NY Giants Super Bowl MVP and Super Bowl XXV Champion Otis Anderson as well as teammate Howard Cross from that Super Bowl.  We get a few words from employees at Fathead, the makers of sports wall clings, some fans, the Philadelphia Eagles cheerleaders, HGTV star of Man Caves & Baltimore Ravens Tony Siragusa, and so much more.

The second video features an interview with ESPN Fantasy guru Matthew Berry and former NY Giants and Jets player Billy Taylor.  You can see a fantasy draft in progress and action from the passing and field goal interactive station.  Plus as a bonus added extra, a joke shared with former New York Giants QB and CBS sportscaster Phil Simms.Fun was had by all that attended and if ReedPop has this event later this year, I am sure they will get a similar turnout.

DSC_4254Also on the second video is an interview with the head chef who drives and operates Johnsonville’s Big Taste Grill.  This thing is the size of an 18 wheeler.  The ideal item for that July the BBQ.  Johnsonville was there as part of the tailgating section of the event.

Thank you to Dr. Bill Chackes, Managing Partner of Football Reporters Online for asking me to cover the event and to incorporate my own unique style of sports media coverage into this fun, humorous, and a little sarcastic video.  Dr. Bill only asked for the first part.

Now keep in mind, these videos were shot in August of 2012 the weekend of the Jets vs. Giants preseason game.  So the topics range from preseason form, the Jets acquisition of Tim Tebow, Chad Johnson, Eli Manning, and so much more.

So enjoy watching the Fantasy Football Fest.  There was some footage not added, that could be used to create more videos in the next few months.  Come back often to find out.

My article from August about the Fantasy Football Fest.  More details about the event and pictures can be found there.

 

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Torch Passed To Lower Class of Jets Tailgating

This past Sunday I went to my first Jets tailgate of the season.  Not game, tailgate.  I have not attended a game in the new MetLife Stadium.  Have had no desire to lay anything out to watch a team make their fans invest and suffer more than a Facebook stockholder.

Now I may not have the experience and knowledge to go in depth about some problems the team has on the field I can sure talk about off field happenings.  Especially when it comes to tailgating.

For the first time I paid to be in a stadium lot rather than walk over from the Sheraton.  We did have to walk over from the Izod using the cattle bridge but at least we were among the Jets tailgating faithful.  While making the trek from the Izod to the J & L yellow parking section,s I noticed a few things that made my heart sank as a Jets fan and tailgating analyst (made up title, I know).

The fisrt thing that was not just obvious, but rampant was the garbage left in the lots after tailgating.  I am not talking about after the game, I am talking about after tailgating leading into kick off.  It was disgusting.  Empty bottles strewn, half filled garbage bags left to collapse, and half eaten food noticeably in the lane of traffic.

One tailgate in L5 even left their entire set up available to all.  Not just some sandwiches left on the table, but an open van, DJ equipment, speakers, a popcorn machine,  and more just left unattended as if to say “take me”.

Now there was a tailgate across from the unattended one that was watching the game from their tailgate.  But it is not their responsibility to watch over another tailgates gear.  Either clean up or do not set up.
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Now I know a good portion of the port-a-potty’s have been taken away, that does not mean one should relieve themselves in the parking lot between cars.  Have more class than that.  Either use a port-a-john or head to the weeds/brush.  You make yourself and others around you look classless.

When the PSL’s were first offered, a large fall off of season ticket holders did not carry over to MetLife Stadium.  Many of these ticket holders could trace their ticket roots to the Polo Grounds or Shea Stadium.  A wave of younger, more active, social conscious tailgater came to the forefront.

A few of the tailgates we passed seemed to keep partying going from the night before in Hoboken.  Complete with music pushed to eleven and dancing.  Now I can understand loud music to get ready for a game.  Bruce Springsteen, Foo Fighters, AC/DC,  and other music like that.  I just can’t see club music as the style to motivate warriors.

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L7 sets up fast and cleans up faster

My wife en pointed out one or two that couldn’t hold it together.  One guy couldn’t be considerate and hold a girls hair so she does not get vomit on it.  Not a true gentleman.  Tailgating before a game should not have to get to that point.
No one is saying to not crank it up and have a blast.  Just do it in a way that does not draw unwanted attention to yourself & your friends.  The Jets have a proud tradition of loyalty from their fans.  Many still remember the days of the Titans at the Polo Grounds.

Tailgating has been about a ritual of great food, friends, and brew to drive us crazy for an upcoming battle.  If it was meant to bring the club to the parking lot complete with annoying music, binge drinking, & certain fans who really seem to be there for the party and not for the game, then the winds of change barely made a faint wisp.

One was able to notice a change in the tailgating climate once Giants Stadium fell.  Many that I knew and had been to for my documentary did not make the change.  Their tickets or seats purchased by a younger ticket holder.  The new element that has taken over the transition of tailgating in the color coded lots.

The socially connected fan who remains wired, in network, ,or addicted to wi-fi in any situation.  Tweeting by the minute or Instagraming a picture, booty shaking on the trailer.  I can remember when tailgating was about tailgating.

Go, have a great time, make some new friends, and feast away.  Just act accordingly and don’t give a reason to bring forth unwanted attention to you and others around you.  Personally, why would one want to give other fans a reason to speak worse about them than they already do.

Tomorrow night the Jets take on the 4-0 Houston TexansMonday Night Football games are in prime-time and so are the ans.  Have a tailgate that makes the SportsCenter Top 10, not the Not Top 10.  Even though some of that stuff is funny.  Have others laugh with you, not at you.  Now that’s memorable.

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Inaugural Fantasy Football Fest Fumbles The Ball, But Room To Improve

Last weekend I was in Atlantic City to cover the inaugural Fantasy Football Festival, a one-of-a-kind fantasy football experience according to the organizers, ReedPOP.  This was the first time any festival or convention was organized and catered around fantasy football.

DSC_4086ReedPOP, the production company behind New York Comic Con (the largest pop culture convention on the east coast), PAX, PAX East, UFC Fan Expo,  & Star Wars Celebration organized the festival.  ReedPOP is dedicated to producing celebrations of popular culture throughout the world that transcend ordinary events by providing unique access and dynamic personal experiences for consumers and fans, is organizing the festival.

Headlining the festival were Philadelphia Eagles’ stars Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy, New York Giants’ greats Phil Simms and Lawrence Taylor, former Washington Redskins QB Joe Theismann, NFL Hall of Famers Jim Kelly, Bruce Smith and Chris Doleman, Super Bowl XXV MVP Ottis Anderson, ESPN Fantasy Expert Matthew Berry and others as they participated in autograph signings, panel discussions and fan Q&A sessions throughout the weekend.

DSC_4091Aside from hosting your own fantasy draft live from the AC Convention Center with your friends, the inaugural festival in AC had a number of activities and special events throughout the weekend including fantasy expert round tables, video game tournaments, interactive athletic competitions (punt, pass, kick, sports memorabilia, & a tailgate party and beer tasting.

To read more about the festival and future events, you can visit their website at www.fantasyfootballfest.com.

Last Thursday night at 9 PM before the event, I was on the weekly Football Reporters Online BlogTalk Radio program interviewing our guest, Greg Topalian, ReedPOP’s Senior VP.  Gregg was excited about the coming event.  He mentioned the radio spots they ran, posting flyers on the boardwalk, and plastering any information about the event where ever they could.

Greg also mentioned how ticket sales were going very well and about 25000 tickets for the festival had either been sold or given out by the radio stations.  From all the information provided it sounded like the inaugural event was going to be a hot ticket in town.

DSC_4092But from those who attended, the event turned out to be a great effort rather than a memorable weekend.  Even Phil Simms could not wait to leave.  More on that later.

Day one started with about 25-30 fans waiting outside for he 10 AM opening.  I had this vision of a long line, maybe 100-150 people standing outside.  Chomping at the bit to get inside for a memorable fantasy football experience where one can also buy some memorabilia and meet some players for an autograph or two.

It was memorable all right, but not in the good way some may have liked.  By the time one was in the door, there was enough time and room to get everything done fast. Which many did.  Not many attended for fantasy football reasons.  Many came in and got the autographs they wanted and left.

Now some did come for fantasy football, but by the time the inquiries were done there was not much left to do.  Even though they had panels, fantasy football drafts on site, and video game stations lined up with Xbox & PS3 with Madden and NCAA football games, it was not enough to keep the patrons there.

The best part of the video game section was the original Nintendo Entertainment System with Super Techmo Bowl.  All one had to do was play as Bo Jackson to win the game.  Not a cheat, but a heavy advantage in the game.

There ere not many vendors inside as well.  There were a bunch of fantasy experts and websites to gain valuable knowledge from, but it was not enough to keep people there for an extended period.  After certain autographs were obtained, many fans left.  It seemed the players were more of a draw for some rather than learning how to draft your fantasy players.

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ESPN’s Matthew Berry & Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick & LeSean McCoy

Over the two day period there were less than five fantasy drafts overall.  Tables were set up to handle at least 12-15 per day at a time.  The panels also drew little listeners.  The only panels people sat and listened to were to the Eagles cheerleaders doing trivia and when the Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy, and ESPN‘s Fantasy Analyst Matthew Berry were taking questions.

Besides the typical fantasy booths like RotoExperts, FantasyGuru, Fantrax.com, Gameday Fantasy Football, and a slew of others, companies like Fathead, Steiner Sports Collectibles, Jack Links Beef Jerky, World Poker Tour, Point Pong. and others tried to offer up football merchandise.

DSC_4208Sirus XM radio had their Fantasy Sports Radio show broadcast live as the event was going on.  Fans could listen in to fantasy experts give their opinion as well as former athletes give their analyst opinions on who to draft for your fantasy team.  94WIP Sports Radio, 97.5 The Fanatic, 97.3 ESPN Radio, & 103.7 WMGM Rocks were also doing certain live broadcasts or reports from the event.

For those wanting a true taste of playing on the gridiron, there were interactive areas where one could catch a pass, kick a field goal, or throw passes for accuracy.  The Giants Perry Williams was having fun along side the fans in the passing section.  Jets/Giants Billy Taylor was giving defensive stance tips to the Lingerie Football League ladies who were also a part of the festivities.

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Jets/Giants Billy Taylor with the ladies of the Lingerie Football League

One could notice some of the other players and former players in attendance wanted to get their time there over as soon as possible.  Many of the fans and even the vendors noticed how some shortened their time on purpose due to the low turnout.

For example, Michael Vick was originally scheduled for his autograph session from 1:30-3:30 PM and then a panel discussion with Matthew Berry breaking down the QB position from 4:15-5 PM.  LeSean McCoy was scheduled from 2:30-4:30 PM for his autograph session.  The only session that did not change was the QB panel discussion.  LeSean McCoy took part in that as well and it became a general Q&A session as well.

Both Michael Vick & LeSean McCoy had their autograph sessions changed from their scheduled times  to 5-6 PM.  $100 for Vick to sign any item and McCoy $60 for any item.  As soon as 5:30 came they both left before the end of their scheduled times.  This could be due to low autograph requests, low attendance, or the fact not many stayed until the 6 PM day one close.

They were great with the fans and signed whatever people presented and answered tons of questions.  One has to wonder why they would leave early.  If they got paid for one time and left before that scheduled time, they really made out like bandits.

DSC_4093Day two of the event saw less fans attend.  Even some of the vendors did not come back for day two.  Some even came in after the 10 AM start time.  The demeanor of the vendors showed their displeasure with the event.  From the supposed 25000 tickets either sold or given away it appeared less than 2000 attended the event.

My wife and I stayed at the Sheraton, less than 50 yards from the convention center.  One of the Sheraton’s attendants mentioned he had no idea the event was going on that weekend.  According to him, he saw no posted advertisements for the event.  While my wife and I walked, we barely saw any ourselves.  The only ads we saw were on a revolving billboard and light post flags leading to the convention center.

DSC_4254Outside the convention center, there was a tailgating section.   WMGM Radio was broadcasting live outside alongside the the worlds largest portable bbq grill.  It takes p the whole trailer of an 18 wheeler.  Johnsonville has three trucks and brings them to various events across the country.  The next stop after the Fantasy Fest was to Bristol, TN for NASCAR.

It appeared there were more food vendors inside than outside.  The driver of the Johnsonville truck was also the grillmaster.  Johnsonville was at the event to help raise charitable funds for the Marines.  But they felt let down by the event.

DSC_4253They claim there were no signs or posters inside to direct fans outside to the tailgating section.  After checking the event floor, there really was no signs.  They were all posted outside the doos of the event in various parts of the convention center.  We went outside both days and each time the tailgating section looked empty.

The guys from Johnsonville felt disappointed as they look to help raise funds for charity.  This event let them down as they could not raise the kinds of charitable funds for the Marines as they had hoped.

Day two also saw former Giants QB Phil Simms as the autograph attraction.  Phil was great with the kids and more than happy to talk to the fans and sign whatever they wanted.  I found out from one of his handlers that he drove himself down there that morning.

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NY Giants QB & Football Analyst Phil Simms

Phil Simms was scheduled from 11AM-1PM.  And like a few others the day before, he could not wait to get out of the event.  His line for autographs was short and he left the event before the end of his scheduled autograph time.  Phil Simms sped out the door so fast he beat Usain Bolt’s world record in the 100 yard dash.  I should know, I was behind him taking video.

The event may not have been an overall success for some, but for those who got what they paid for, they left satisfied.  I guess if you are a true fantasy football fan and you had your questions answered before you could draft your players, then it was a success.  If your kids saw the players you grew up watching and had them sign the autographs you wanted, then you left smiling.

If ReedPOP plans to do this event next year, there is a lot that needs to be rethought and restructured.  Not only do the fans who attend need to leave happy, but so should your exhibitors.  They pay for space on the floor and should be given a true chance to make a profit on top of their expenses for the festival.  If the exhibitors leave the event pleased, then they will plan  to return next year.

If there had been video game tournaments where players could play Madden, NCAA 13, or Siper Techmo Bowl with prizes and sponsor tie ins from EA Sports, Nintendo, Sony or others could have added more of an interactive feel to the event.

ReedPOP could show live status feeds from Twitter to encourage the use of social media to get people to the event immediately.  Even a prize every hour for the best tweet.

I enjoyed myself at the event.  The Philadelphia Eagle cheerleaders formed lines to welcome fans in and I ran threw.  I took my attempt at the field goal kick.  If you want to know how I did, come back when the video is up.  Plus I interviewed New York Giants Otis Anderson, Howard Cross, Perry Williams, Billy Taylor, Jets Bruce Harper, Ravens Tony Siragusa, ESPN’s Matthew Berry, and more.  So in order to know what we talked about, you WILL have to come back for the video.

DSC_4199If ReedPOP decides to do this event next year, I will come back.  I’d like to see how they can improve in their second year to increase attendance.  This convention can be a success with the right adjusting.  Take advantage of the successes it had and capitalize on it for next year.  You will find football fans do enjoy events like this as it provides the interaction fans welcome from players.

When the players are signing autographs & laughing, fans obtaining signatures and memorabilia, and vendors are interacting with sales and valuable fantasy information, then everyone is happy.  That is how you measure an event’s success.

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New York Jets & Their Fans In Giants Shadow Once Again

Woody Johnson, Mike Tannenbaum, Rex Ryan, and the rest of the New York Jets organization were likely turned off by the New York Giants celebrations.   The Jets always take a backseat to the Giants, and Tuesday they watched the Giants roar through Manhattan and return back to MetLife Stadium to continue the celebration.

Approximately 35,000  Giants fans welcomed home to MetLife Stadium their new Super Bowl Champions.  The crowd boomed as the Giants came through the tunnel and onto the field, and as they did, Justin Tuck took a moment to soak in the color. Everywhere he looked, in this stadium that two teams call home, all he could see was blue.

“Last time we did this it was in Giants Stadium,” Tuck said, as he stood on a stage at midfield, behind the Lombardi trophy. “Now we’re in MetLife Stadium.  “But one thing you can be sure of is whose house this is.”  The whole scene made it seem even more crazy to Giants co-owner Steve Tisch that people once thought New York would soon belong to the Jets.

With those words, the Giants put to rest once and for all the question of who really owns New York — a question that dominated the conversation when the 2011 season began. The entire city has been painted blue since the Giants beat the Patriots, 21-17, in Super Bowl XLVI on Sunday night, from the Empire State Building to the Canyon of Heroes, all the way to City Hall.

President and CEO of the Giants, John Mara, spoke at the ceremony at MetLife stadium Tuesday afternoon. He said, “there’s no place like home.”  Justin Tuck ended his speech saying, “One thing you can be sure of is whose house it is.”

Woody Johnson and the Jets might have been sick when they heard these comments.  It is the last thing the Jets franchise wanted to hear.  MetLife Stadium was supposed to be their home as well, and they had to watch the Giants christen the stadium with the first championship in the new building.

If the Giants had any lingering doubts about fan support, they were erased when the Giants’ parade of buses came off the New Jersey Turnpike and drove through a parking lot full of tailgaters at the Meadowlands. It’s a sight Giants co-owner John Mara has seen often since his team began playing here in 1976.  A sight Jets fans are not used.  Being able to tailgate before a rally.

In some ways, seeing it on Tuesday afternoon meant even more to Mara than the parade.  “We just had an incredible experience going through the Canyon of Heroes,” Mara told the crowd. “But I have to tell you, when you pull into the stadium and see all these fans here, you know there’s no place like home.”

Justin Tuck giving fans a chance with the Lombardi Trophy

“To see this kind of fan support when you come out here, it’s hard to put into words,” an emotional Mara added after the ceremony was over. “The whole day is unbelievable. To watch these players come back here to our home (MetLife Stadium) and see this kind of enthusiasm is really the icing on the cake.”

The crowd went crazy when Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning carried the Lombardi Trophy into the stadium, and then Tuck carried it up onto the stage. They all intensely watched their own highlight video on the four scoreboards, before Tom Coughlin thanked them for their unwavering support.

The Jets organization and their fans looked forward to giving the new stadium its first championship.  Mark Sanchez would have carried the Lombardi trophy instead of Eli Manning.  Now, MetLife stadium will be know as the home of the 2012 Super Bowl Champion Giants.  Jet fans will see that distinction every time they visit MetLife Stadium.  There may not be a banner or mural, but it will be emblazoned in their minds.  Jet fans wanted to upstage their “big brother” and show they are one of the NFL’s eite

The Jets started the Giants’ championship run after a Christmas Eve embarrassment. The Jets thought this was their season. They thought that at the end of the year they would be New York’s team.  But once again, they are an afterthought to the World Champion Giants.

What now for the Jets? How does the Giants’ Super Bowl win impact the Jets?  The Jets were already looking to make changes this offseason. They took the first step when they parted ways with Brian Schottenheimer after their season ended.  Now they need to do right by their fans and gain their support rather than losing it.

That will not be enough. The Jets need to stop lying to the public about what their intentions are for the organization. For months we heard the Schottenheimer would be with the Jets in 2012 when everyone knew what the outcome would be.  Jet fans are tired of being looked down upon by the Jets and treated differently than Giants fans.

It is time for the Jets to try to steal the spotlight away from the Giants. What better way than to sign Peyton Manning?  The Jets have already been spoken of as a contender to land Manning, but after they watched Eli Manning parade around with the Super Bowl MVP trophy, it will make the Jets more serious contenders.

Peyton Manning will bring tremendous excitement to the Jets next season. If they don’t sign Manning, they will not have attention on them and will not have made any moves worthy of hype in New York.  Just think of the Brett Favre signing.  The Jets best press seems to come from off the field moves rather than on the field play.

Peyton would provide stories, speculation and expectations for the Jets going in to next season. Without him, the Jets are miles behind the Giants going into next season.  Peyton would be able to close the gap before the 2012 season.  Just the type of press coverage the Jets enjoy.

If the Jets do not have success with Sanchez next season, they will be looking for a change at quarterback anyways. They might consider making the change this season and take a gamble on Eli’s big brother.  Otherwise, MetLife Stadium will forever be known for the Giants championship victory and the Jets looking on as usual.

Giants quotes courtesy of the NY Post, WNBC, & WFAN.

Players & Fans Wait Together On End To NFL Lockout

When sports crown a new NBA champion & NHL Stanley Cup winner, it begins the summer sports lull that is usually filled by the start of NFL mini-camps and the start of training camp.  A buzz normally fills the air on what teams are looking good in training camp, even before the preseason opener.

This year is different. This year we are being submitted to endless baseball highlights & whatever else ESPN can show during SportsCenter due to continued arguing over a billion dollar industry.  A summer that should be filled with players and teams preparing for gridiron battle.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has reduced his pay to $1 for the duration of the lockout. With each passing day not being paid, players miss out on crucial practices and playing tim. However, fans have it much worse: they are stuck at home with no hope of a Super Bowl come January. Stuck with Packers fans bragging about their epic title run.  Stuck talking about a season that may never come.

Goodell says that the lockout isn’t just to benefit players and owners though; fans will benefit as well.  Fans never benefit when players and owners talk about what money they are owed.

Fans wait to make certain decisions before the season starts.  What single games do they want to purchase, what away games to attend, what to buy in preparation for tailgating, when to buy that new HDTV, and other decisions usually made before football begins.

Certain fans have already given up their season tickets.  Some have had it with riisng ticket prices and others just feel the lockout was the last straw in seeing how little the fans mean to the NFL.  Some Jets fans have not just given up their seats, but trying to sell their PSL’s as well.

“That’s why we are trying to get a better economic model” Goodell told reporters last week. “And I think everyone understands that. You (the fans) are not being left out of the equation. The fans are a big part of that equation and a big part of the success of NFL football.”  He sees costs being passed down to the fan that would be prevented with a better business model.  Costs are already too high so any economic change for the fan is good.

Free agency is a critical time for teams to acquire new players to help supplement their squad. The big signings that occur every year and change the landscape of the NFL excite fans for the coming season. This is when we can stop talking about the Super Bowl champion and have a reason to feel that this year is different.

Last year former Carolina Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers was probably the biggest name amongst free-agent signees. Peppers went on to be a contributor for the Chicago Bears with 8 sacks against constant double teams. Bears fans were sure they were on the right path to win the big game.

Kenny Britt awaiting judges decision. Credit: NJ.com

This year it’s supposed to be whatever team can land Nnamdi Asomugha, a cornerback who has proven that he can shut down half the field. Unfortunately, he won’t find a home until the lockout finally comes to an end.  Same goes with the NFL rookies.  Drafted by their new organizaton, they can not be signed or talked to.

Our favorite players are also getting into trouble because they have too much time on their hands.  Tennessee Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt was charged with resisting arrest and tampering with evidence this week when he crushed a joint as police approached him.  The police didn’t find any drugs on him, but this is likely a situation that would have been avoided if players were focused on the season.

Now the Titans are entering the season with a diminished receiving group and are likely facing another sub-par year.  Less time to work with coaches, less time to improve.

Former Giants and Steelers wide receiver Plaxico Burress just got out of jail but can’t sign with a team because of the lockout.  The best he can do is workout and practice with others so he can get into some kind of playing shape.

Formerly a dynamic game changing receiver and Super Bowl hero, Burress will enthuse the fans of whatever team he goes to – if and when he does actually get signed.

I hope Goodell is sincere that the resulting post-lockout business model reduces costs that are being passed down to fans. We are the reason the league is so successful, and the more of the league year us fans lose to the lockout the more interested we will become in things not related to the NFL.  Goodell should learn from what happened to MLB and the NHL.

Do PSL’s Really Make Football Better? Or Worse For Fans

Since August of 2008, I have been filming a documentary about the New York Jets PSL situation and how the fans have had their ups and downs with it.  Over this past season, many fans have kind of settled into new positions in the new parking structure.  Set up like the hierarchy of rings that used to exist in medieval times.  Where the royalty would be in the middle close to the castle and the further you went out, the lower in class it became.  The higher priced parking passes are closer to the stadium.  Ones with non PSL seats have to park over by the Izod Center.  You tell me what type of message the Jets are sending to their fans.

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Many long time season ticket holders who have had tailgating groups for years feel cheated by not just the new parking system, but from the PSL’s as well.  Many were not able to get seats next to friends like they have in years past.  Those with cheaper PSL’s or NON PSL seats can not sit with those in the lower bowl.  Also, Mary Lou Wilson who parks in the Green parking said some long time friends they tailgated with in old section 13A have the non PL seats do not want to bring all their gear over to the green parking.  Even though Mary Lou and her kids can park over there, they still have friends in the green parking to tailgate with.  Who wants to lug all that gear and waste time just to have to drag it all back early?

Bruce Speight, Senior Director of Media Relations, told me they did what they could to appease fans.  But you can not please them all.  I wonder what true steps they took to find out what the fans wanted.  I know they did send a survey out via e mail two years ago.  But did anyone from the Jets organization act like the Census and go from tailgate to tailgate to get the fans opinions.  Probably not.  They do not mind sending face painters out there to charge for face painting.  Maybe if the team spent time walking through the lots talking to fans and truly got to know what they wanted, sales could have gone faster.

This is something sports writers do not cover, especially sports beat writers.  there is always a focus on the players, coaches, on and off the field events, and even trades.  There are not many sports writers that cover the business decisions teams makes, how it affects the fans, or even the fans in general.  Occasionally, there are stories that appear about fans.  But not too often.  They mainly come about during the season, after a team or player has already made news about an issue.  It may not be front page news, but is it news nonetheless.  If there were no paying fans to show up, it would just be a bunch of guys playing ball.  I guess while filming my documentary I had to take it upon myself to cover them and tell their side so they feel they have a voice.  Fans care about news regarding the teams and their players.  So the teams and players should care about what is going on with their fans.

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Many long time tailgating groups have crumbled and become a shadow of its former self.  I have talked about the Jets Pack a few times, but I have yet to talk about the Jets Nuts.  The Jet Nuts have been coming just as long as the Jets Pack.  You can always tell where the Jet Nuts are by their huge bus they always have.  They are on their fourth bus right now.  They have had hundreds over the years.  But according to the organizers, it has dwindled down significantly.  It is coming to a point where they are laying out more money than they are receiving from fans wanting to share in their tailgate.  Many tailgate set ups charge a small fee to eat and drink at their tailgate.  Rather than shrink it down they just might call it quits by years end.  PSL’s have not just separated fans in the stadium, but even in tailgating as well.

PSL’s, for some, are a necessary evil.  The Jets and Giants never said what other financing options they looked into before settling on the PSL’s as a final option.  If the New England Patriots can do it then any team can.  Even though their stadium is in the middle of nowhere, small screen, no escalators, they still managed to do it all without PSL’s.  Sometimes I wonder if the new stadium was built for the fans or for the teams owners friends to enjoy a lavish place to watch football games and network for more business.  Make it their own upscale country club.  The Jets and Giants had no idea how much they tore their fan base apart.

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Sports teams need to wake up and realize that bigger and better is not necessarily the way to go.  There has to be a happy medium.  The Jets have already doe this and is evident every time I film in the parking lot.  I am here for the fans to be their voice.  Hoping to show other sports franchises what PSL’s can to do their own fan base.  I know some fans do not care, they are willing to spend their money and do what the team says to do to keep going to games.  Others have the kind of disposable income where they can afford to spend and do not care about what other fans think.  It is this kind of thinking that shows team owners win and can do what they want.

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The fans have the real power.  If the fans were all on the same page then the teams would have to change how they set their prices and policies.  The Jets learned this already with the PSL’s and lowered prices.  If the fans kept showing that solidarity, then we all win in the end.  Not just the ones with deep pockets.   Some will agree, others will disagree.  But we all want to enjoy our game day experience with our friends and have that bond for years.  Not to lose it because some friends who used to be able to afford tickets now can not.  Makes me proud to be a reporter of the fans.  Not just because I care, but because I am one of the ones who could not afford to keep my tickets.  The fans are a story and I am the only one who sees it.

Jets Fans Coping With New Parking & Fewer Friends

Today the Jets returned home to the Meadowlands to face the Green Bat Packers.  It was one of the better days for tailgating.  After the abysmal rain and hail from the Monday night game a few weeks back, today was a relief for many.  Not just great weather, but there were an abundance of great tailgates.  Seemed there were a ton of set ups, large and small.  Sixto and I passed by so many that we were invited to stop by and share in their partying.  But we were on a tight schedule with planned interviews and to find some we had interviewed over the past few years,  Also seems some are coping with fewer friends since some did not purchase a PSL while others just tailgate separately now.

We arrived around 8 AM over to the Sheraton across from the stadium to park and then cross over Route 3 to the stadium parking.  I did that the first game as it was close and did not cost anything.  Man did that change.  It appears StubHub now charges $25 for off site parking there and provides a shuttle bus to get across.  I told the parking attendant I was meeting someone at the hotel and he waived me in.  Saved myself $25 as it is crazy to charge parking at every off site location independently.  The hotel next door was charging $20 and many business locations off Route 120 were charging parking at their locations.  Seems many are taking advantage and trying to make a buck off the Jets and Giants parking situation.

We got there early enough to see the guys from the Smoken Pit setting up and those who prefer to start their tailgate even before many are awake.  We made our way over to a bunch who started their tailgate by meeting on Twitter.  The L7 Crew sets up in, Lot L7, obviously.  A group that met on Twitter as Jets fans and decided to have a Jets tailgate group.  Erik Manassey of Jets Twit was there, and Twitter users @L7Tailgate, @JetsBoy, @LaPortal, amongst others.  They have a certain food I really wanted to try, but did not have.  They call it the “Rex Ryan”  A hot dog, wrapped in a cheeseburger, wrapped in bacon.  I brought along a Vytorin AND a Lipitor just in case.  We will be going back to try that and get some words with them as to how Twitter has helped improve their Jets game day experience.

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After there we started talking with a gentleman who was telling me about his PSL issues.  Turns out, the Jets moved his PSL payment due November 1st to next year.  To try and make it easier to sell them, they pushed off peoples payments to next year in order to sell the off faster.  Now this is just one annual payment.  But this is something that will not happen again.  The Jets made certain concessions not just to help fans with payments, but to make it easier on them to offload the PSLs.  The Jets want to come across like they care about their fans, but the fans think differently from what they tell me.  This fan also told me his friends were coming soon and one was a guy named Kevin who drove a Jets hearse.  I met Kevin during the Baltimore game and could not wait to see him again.  Also coming was long time season ticket holder Ken ikowski, who I have interviewed over the past few years.  It is amazing who you run into in the parking lot.

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Sixto and I were on a schedule and we spent some time with Ken and Kevin as they pulled in for a bit.  Always fun to see what Kevin puts in the casket in the hearse.  Now I was not expecting to see some old faces from the Jets Pack over by where Ken was tailgating.  It seems one of the Jets Pack founders Caesar and a few others set themselves up over there, not where Richie and a few others were set up some weeks back.  Seems Cesar never got a straight answer from Richie about where to set up and many tailgate where Cesar has been setting up.  Cesar told me about 80% of the old Jets Pack did not buy a PSL, they did not feel it was worth the investment.  So they get about 10-15 per game now, a large drop.  Where I saw Richie set up there was maybe about three or four.  The PSLs took this longtime group and separated them to a point where their game day tailgating experience is no longer the same.  Cesar looked like it was not as enjoyable anymore.

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By this time we had a scheduled interview with Don LaGreca.  Don does the Jets pregame and post game show on 1050 ESPN Radio along with New York Jets alum Greg Buttle.  Don is also on the Michael Kay show on 1050 during the week.  Now they used to broadcast outside Gate D of the old stadium.  Made it easy to walk right up and talk with them.  With the new stadium, one has to present their ticket just to be able to walk around outside the stadium.  Since I am not a ticket holder, I had to wait outside.  Also, since i have no media credentials as Bruce Speight would say” I am technically not the media”. I could not get even close to inside.  I called Don and he was able to do the interview before going inside which was great.  Always a plus to get some face time with a broadcaster who not just has face time with fans but hears from them while on the air.  He does provide a unique perspective.  I wish more in the media/broadcasting industry would be as open as Don.  I have tried contacting Mike Francessa and got nowhere.

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We met up with Mary Lou Wilson and her son Tommy Jr.  I have written about Tommy Wilson in the past.  He was one of the more die hard Jets fans I have met.  Tommy won a Visa contest to represent the Jets in the Hall of Fame and passed away last year unexpectedly.  Mary Lou thought about giving up the seats but knew Tommy would not have wanted that.  Last year was a hard season but this year is different.  Once again, many people who used to tailgate with them at 13A are not there.  Some did not get PSL’s, others do not have the right parking permits, while others feel it is not the same.  For the remainder of tailgating last year, it was very somber without Tommy.  He was the nucleus that held that tailgate together.  Tommy Jr; got a tattoo to remember his father, even though his father did not like tattoos.  I will have more about Tommy this week along with more about my day in the lot.

We made it back to Ken and his friends not too much later.  Ken had 6 seats in the lower section.  He opted out of being a PSL holder.  Having two kids in college takes precedent over the PSLs.  But that does not stop him from cheering on the Jets.  He does still attend away game and pays less for a ticket there than at the Jets home.  Ken has paid anywhere from $25-$50 for a seat in Buffalo, New England, Miami, Cleveland, and other stadiums around the league.  He would rather pay the travel to take members of his family than the $120 a seat plus to attend a Jets home game.  He said with PSL costs and tickets one can attend an away game for less.  Even Ken’s friends who he tailgated with ofor years opted out of returning for another season.  Ken would never consider being a season ticket holder again.

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I also found the Jets Nuts and where they had moved their bus too.  They are on their 4th bus and may not make it back next year.  A lot more stuff to cover later this week about today.  It seems many people I have talked with in the past are not liking their tailgating situations.  To many, that experience alone made them want to come to the games.  Thre are many who are displaced and feeling like the team only cared about the PSLs.  Many would have liked the old parking structure.  The only ones who like it now are the ones who did not enjoy tailgating.  Maybe if the Jets took the right steps in the past and had an employee who was a liaison between them and the fans, things could have gone smoother.  Teams need to realize tailgating helps people decide weather to buy tickets or not.

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Who Do Sports Writer’s, Blogs, & Reporters Actually Write For?

A few weeks ago I talked with Bruce Speight from the Jets organization.  I told him I was going to be filming during tailgating again this year.  New stadium, new parking, and many fans will have new or old faces at their tailgates.  He asked me to send him an e mail stating what I wanted to do and when.  So I did that.  I call him back last week to follow up on the e mail, I left a message.  I did the same thing this week.  He called me back on Thursday telling me he did not open the e mail so to let him know what was in it.  Bruce tells me to send him something and he does not even bother to read it.  I guess I am that insignificant to them.  If I paid them, then I would be on their radar.

Maybe it is because I do not have the money to film or I am not giving them any money to film.  Seems I am a fly speck to them, insignificant.  That what I am doing with my documentary about Jets fans does not matter to them.  When you underestimate someone you let your guard down and anything can happen.  Maybe if I was HBO, Fox, ABC, Paramount, MGM, or a film company that has major money behind them then maybe they would take me seriously.  But instead, I feel like I am treated like what I am doing for their fans does not matter.

Plus I am not a writer like Rich Cimini, Manish Mehta, Jane McManus or anyone else from a major news publication.  Not even one of the Jets blogs who report only on the team and team happenings.  Seems majority of the Jets fan blogs write only positive articles about players & events.  Have yet to find one that truly gives opinions, positive and negative.  But since I report to myself, do my own editing and reporting why would they take someone like me serious.  I report on what is actually going on, no sugar coating it.

I do not play up to the organization just to get on their good side.  Maybe if I did, they would appreciate what I did more like the other blogs who do the “rah rah” stuff for them.   Maybe a small mention or paragraph about things is done, but no editorial or opinion piece about it all. I know of a few that do write for the Post, Times, and other news sources that do report on everything, good and bad.  Like the obstructed view of seats in the new stadium, the way fans have been treated by the organizations, and how PSLs were priced too high.  But those writers are not beat writers who do not cover the teams on a daily basis.

Maybe the ones who do cover it daily have an editor or boss does not want to create waves in the organization so they can keep getting access to the locker room and field.  If one makes too many waves, then no more access to players, the team, the field, or anything else closed to the general public.  Not good business for that paper, network or website.  Seems the teams make the rules on what to report about in some cases like interviews.

I just feel a lot of Jets blogs just cover the field and players.  Some will cover charity events and other activities the players take part in.  They should cover everything Jets, even the stuff that is not good that affects what happens off the field.  Do not see too many blogs or Jets beat writers focus on the stadium issues too much, or the PSL and ticket sales.  Do their readers feel that is not newsworthy?  The beat writers have to always beat the other out on team information and work hard at what they do.  Maybe information on off the field events could help.  Some Jets blogs come down on you hard if you go against their opinion.  They think you are not really a Jets fan if you do not think things their way.  Would like to see more blogs focus on everything Jets, not just Hard Knocks, the games, and what a player is doing off the field.

The only ones I see writing opinion pieces or editorials are ones who do not follow the Jets or write about them on a daily basis.  The ones who are not sports writers for major news sources or Jets beat writers for the NY Post, NY Times, ESPN, and other major news sources.  I read a great piece by Tom Dowd on SiLive.com about the new stadium, Jets, and Giants.  It is article’s like this I wish more had the urge to write.  He gives his honest opinion about the new stadium and others in the New York area.  Other New York area reporters talked about the new stadium, but many focus more on the pros than the cons.  He is some of what Tom had to say:

“The transformation of the New York sporting experience — also known as the exile of thousands of life-long, die-hard fans — is almost complete.

In two weeks, the Giants and Jets will play their first regular-season games at their new, $1.6 billion palace in the swamps of Jersey. The Yankees and Mets are in year two of their Shake Shacked, Hard Rocked monuments to excess. The renovation that will radically recreate Madison Square Garden — and likely its already oppressive ticket prices as well — has already begun…”

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The Giants practice at the new Meaadowlands Stadium during a June minicamp.

“And legions of fans deciding that a giant hi-def flat screen is a better deal than the prices on their old season tickets that have rocketed into the stratosphere.

This won’t hurt any franchise’s bottom line. Most of the tickets will still sell to somebody, and at a higher price than before.

It’s the final triumph of the free market and the end of shame in sports ownership.

Owners and commissioners still love their little sound bites, claiming their concern for the fans, but they only manage to set new marks for disingenuousness.

It’s an amazing ability to tell a lie that you know nobody will believe anyway.

Maybe they did think about the fans, just a little bit, once upon a time. Maybe there was a line, off in the distance, and beyond it lay excess that just seemed over the top. But that’s over.

What changed it? Try the explosion of the secondary ticket market on the Internet in the last decade.

On StubHub and Ebay and Craigslist, tickets were everywhere. People bought them, at prices far above face value. Sports owners — and concert promoters — saw this, and got angry. Because this was their product, and they weren’t getting a cut.

Now they knew, or so they thought, how much people were really willing to pay.

But they overreached. They confused the one-game-at-a-time high end ticket buyer with the faithful, steady season ticket holder. So the new buildings went up with their exclusive sponsored clubs and walled off premium seating areas.

It’s all very impressive, as long as your primary reason for going to a game has nothing to do with actually watching the game. Or if you’ve been dreaming of a $15 pastrami sandwich washed down by some fine spirits at the wine bar.”

“How much does the best seat in sports cost? Just $700 a seat each game — plus the personal seat license — although the alleged value lies in getting up out of that seat to mill around at the edge of the field behind the Jets bench, where the view tends to be obscured by 40 or so very large men. You could also wander underneath the stands to get a drink at the bar, grab a few shrimp cocktails from the buffet or pose at the lectern where Rex Ryan will deliver his postgame press conference in a glass-walled media room.

It turned out to be a harder sell than expected. The Yankees ended up cutting the prices of their most expensive tickets behind the plate – all the way down to $1,600 for one seat to a game.

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The Jets made the halfway sensible move of selling upper deck season tickets without a PSL, then watched fans flee field level when they couldn’t afford their old tickets. They cut some of their mid-level PSLs and ticket prices in half, but less than a month before their Monday night opener against the Ravens on Sept. 13, the Jets were still cold-calling upper level season ticket holders asking them to upgrade to lower level seats with PSLs attached that hadn’t been sold yet.

And if you went on Ticketmaster.com this week, you would have found that the New York Giants, only one of the toughest tickets in sports for decades, had single game tickets still available.

Of course, they would cost you $725.

For that kind of cash, I’ve got my eye on a nice 50-inch plasma screen.”

I could be wrong in my assumption, but you can find any post or article on the internet these days.  What I see is what I find.  And what I see is just news reporting on trades, training camp, players, and anything else team related.  Not too much Jets organization related.  They do a great job telling these news sources what to report about.  Guess that is why my documentary will cover everything, nothing held back about the stadium, ticket sales, PSL’s, or even the fans.  Stuff covered slightly by sports press I will go into more detail about.  I am not the liberal media & will not write just to make everyone happy, I write on what everyone sees & knows no matter how honest it is.

If i had the money, I know I would have more footage and coverage from the Jets.  But since I don’t, I am on the outside looking in.  If I was a Jets beat reporter, I would have better news and access to stories to add to the documentary.  But once again, I am on the outside looking in.  I may not have the right degree or work history to land myself a career in the media or broadcasting field.  But that does not mean I am not dedicated to what I am doing to get myself there.  I did not write for years on small papers or stations, have the right internship, or know the right people to get me a foot in the door with any employer.  But I do have the persistence, intelligence, and a fast learner to possibly help me get a foot in somewhere.  Filming this documentary and writing for my website and others has taught me a lot.

I will have more a little later about the Jets offering upper deck seats on a game y game basis.  Once again, Woody Johnson takes two steps back.  He did say they would not offer seats on a game by game basis.  Then again, he could say he meant PSL seats, not non PSL seats.  When you are privately held company, you can say whatever you want, no stockholders to answer to.  In this case, you have the fans to answer to.

The Monday Night Infomercial

So the Jets lost the first official NFL game in the New Meadowlands Stadium by a score of 31-16. Albeit it was a preseason game, but it was the game for New York bragging rights.  The New York Jets did show some promise.  Mark Sanchez was 13 for 17 with an interception & touchdown early in the first quarter.  LT and Shonn Greene ran the ball well and had both speed and yardage to get into the end zone.  Running behind rookie fullback  “The Terminator” John Connor helped create extra running yards as he opened up the lane and created many key blocks.  Al in all the Jets showed promise in their first preseason game.  They were able to show they can transfer what they learned in training camp into an actual game.  Now they can take a step forward and improve for their next outing.

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I believe the game took second chair to what was truly on the main stage tonight, the new Meadowlands Stadium.  Tonight’s Monday Night Football game was the first time a Jets and Giants preseason game was held on a Monday night.  Let alone any preseason game on a Monday night.  The team owners and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell probably talked months ago about how a Monday Night Football game would really show the new stadium in a way that could not be shown on a Friday night or Saturday.  Figuring having it on prime-time on ESPN would really make the place stand out to those who were on the fence about a PSL.  The camera shots not on the game and sideline made it feel more like an infomercial for the new stadium than a football game.

Coming back from commercial they showed the bars on the mezzanine and lower levels.  The Clubs around the Coaches Club area.  The Green rooms where certain PSL holders get their free food.  The Luxury suites with leather chairs and fireplaces.  Coaches Club VIP areas behind the teams bench.  I think the only thing they did not show was how spacious the bathroom stalls are.  To me it felt like an infomercial about the new stadium.  A way to showcase it to millions watching at home as if to say “don’t you wish you paid your money to be here?”  Even the commentators were going on about the new stadiums amenities.  Did everyone forget there was a game going on?  Of course they didn’t.  They want fans to spend time out and about away from their seats in the other areas of the stadium.  They already got their money for the PSLs and tickets, now it is time to spend it in other parts of the new stadium.

There will be those who will disagree with me and say how sports is a luxury.  Say how that is how it is these days and if you do not have the money then you can not experience the way a game was meant to be seen.  There are two sets of fans now.  Those who have and those who had.  The ones who had wish they could still be there, but do not want a PSL or sit so far up.  Those who have are excited, able to watch their team in a state of the art stadium.  But will it be worth the price in a few years?  Many view the PSL as stock and what will that stocks price be worth if the Jets become the Jets of old?  If the Jets do not win the Super Bowl or make the playoffs, how much will those PSLs be worth?  Now it seems like a great investment to many and many will hold onto them for life.  But to others, the not so die hard fans who have been there for years, how long will they want them?

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Many were very excited to be there tonight, win or lose.  Able to gawk at the new concession stands, bars, and other areas to shake your wallet at.  But in the end, everyone is there for the game.  To see two football teams play on the field.  If you are there to watch the game at one of the bars, VIP lounges, or any other screen away from your seat, what was the purpose in buying your seat?  Just to say you have season tickets?

I wish the New York Jets well this season.  I hope they can provide that elusive Super Bowl win they have wanted to give their fans for decades.  But unless they sign Darelle Revis, what will those odds be?  ESPN played one hell of an infomercial tonight.  Woody Johnson must be proud of his new county club.  I am sure the Jets and Giants sales representatives will be by their phones tomorrow hoping tonight’s prime time sales pitch did its job.

Meadowlands Stadium Is Woody Johnson’s Country Club

It seems the closer it gets to the 2010 season the more the Jets do to lose their trusted fan base.  I am reading articles on NJ.com, Newsday, The Jets Report, ESPNNewYork.com, and so many other websites.  Woody Johnson promises all PSLs will be sold by the home opener.  Fans outraged by not just parking prices, but a hierarchy in parking as well.  Ben Gray, a 20-year season ticket holder of the team, reached his breaking point this week when he learned that the hierarchy in PSL class will be busting up his tailgate party.

As Steve Politi of the Newark Star-Ledger explains it, “Gray and his friends have been tailgating in lot 13-B for years.  Just like The Jets Pack, Sal & Carmine, Frank Conway, & others do in other sections around the stadium.  And as anyone who regularly attends NFL or college football games knows, the tailgating can even become bigger than the game itself, with carefully crafted menus and a unique brand of human bonding.  But because some of Gray’s friends didn’t buy PSLs, they can’t park in lot 13-B, which is reserved for those who paid for the right to pay for their tickets.

“We just feel like we’ve been taken to the woodshed again and again,” Gray said. “Going to a football game should be something you enjoy, but these guys just see dollars.”

But for Gray, his upgraded experience includes breaking up the group with which he had spent years tailgating.  And it’s possible that Gray has had enough.

“This was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” Gray said. “I keep wondering, ‘How are they going to get us next?’”

Muke Florio of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com reports:

“Though the Jets have a plausible explanation, fans who have a Rain Man-style obsession with their game-day routines don’t care about “plausible.”  They want things to stay the way they were.

“For those people who committed to the PSLs and the luxury suites, we want to do whatever we can to provide a much better experience,” Jets executive vice president for stadium development Thad Sheely told Politi.  “I don’t see it as a restriction,” Sheely said. “I see it as an upgraded experience for people who have paid for an upgraded experience.”

They consider it an upgraded experience.  Many consider it robbery.  I would love to know if any of the New York Jets employees personal family or friends have thought about opting into the PSLs.  Did the Jets employees try to use the corporate rhetoric on them to get them to purchase them or were they sympathetic if there were cost issues?  If they talked their family or friends into it then they should be ashamed to even be a business.  Thad Sheely is a paid employee of the Jets so of course he would defend the PSLs and those who bought them.  Get him alone away from the press and see if he changes his answer, as long as none of the Jets Management is around.

I know the Jets want everyone to think the more you pay, the more benefits you get.  But when does the New York jets Country Club stop basing membership on how much money someone should spend?  Do they only want those who will spend or those or just want tow atch a football game then leave?  They can not have it both ways.  They have turned off so many fans and have attracted so much bad press how much damage control can they do?  If prices keep going up and get too costly, who will afford to keep going?  Do they really expect their long time blue collar fan base or families to keep going to their games?  This season, take a good look at who will be sitting in those PSL seats.  You will see a younger crowd, less families, and those who made out on Wall Street while others lost their jobs or house.  The Jets do not care about those fans, just the paying ones.  They know even those at home will still buy merchandise.

The New York Jets are a private company and do not have to tell anyone how many PSLs are left.  All they want to do is sell every one, have sold one games, and make a profit every time.  That is it.  They can say they are sympathetic to the fans and want to give those who paid an upgraded experience.  Look at the NFL Draft Day party they had there.  If that is any indication of how they treat their loyal paying fans then the PSL holders are the only ones they care about.  The non PSL holders to them are basic peasants.  Charging $9 beers while Giants PSL and non PSL holders get everything for free.  It shows the New York Jets do not care about the non PSL paying fans, only their checkbook.  I am sure if they wanted to upgrade to a PSL seat then they would care.

I know I am ranting here but it gets me angry to see loyal fans for so many years get shafted only because they do not want to pay for a PSL.  It is like gambling at a casino.  The casino takes care of their high rollers while everyone else gets a free drink while they play.  But if the average Joe spends more and made more from them, then he gets taken care of.  They only care about the dollar coming in and keeping you there to spend hat you have.  Just like the new Meadowlands Stadium.  The Jets organization have better spin doctors working for them than the government.  They will try to make any bad situation into a good one just to sell seats.  But the fans know better.

I have had some in the Jets organization ask me to change the title of my documentary, “Gang Greed”.  They think I will paint them in a bad light.  I do not have to do any of that.  They create their own press and how much of it has been good for the Jets?  Not much.  Even Fireman Ed quoted that term when talking about the Jets organization.  They write their own story.  If they wanted to be seen is a positive light then they are the ones who need to change their image.  Change it with the fans and understand they are the ones who support them, not sponsors or celebrities.  The gang is greedy and how much is enough?  Only time will tell.

I hope Woody Johnson is proud of what he did to a loyal fan base who stood by the team for over 45 years.  At least Leon Hess had Hess oil as an advertiser and supported the fans.  I never saw a Johnson & Johnson ad or sponsorship for the Jets.  Maybe he should come out of his box once in a while and sit where they loyal fans are to really get to know what the fans want.   Not just walk around the parking lot during tailgating for a photo op to show fans that “he cares”.  Even in Rich Cimini’s interview he skirted around the PSL issue.  He knows they are in trouble and does not want to admit it.  Not a good poker face Woody.

I think that is enough for tonight.  The more that comes out the more I will have to say about this issue.  I am glad more fans are coming out and talking about their issues with the Jets.  We will not go quietly into the night.  More fans need to speak up about this.  Show you have a voice that will not be silenced.  The Jets will say the PSLs were a great idea, fans are on board, the economy is not affecting the sales(which they later detracted), and whatever it takes to get them sold.  I will finish with this.  In September of 2008, Woody Johnson was quoted by News 12 New jersey that if the Jets charged more for the PSLs, the fans would pay it.  I hope he likes how his foot tastes.  Here is what remains of the Jets former home.

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