Buying a ticket to an NFL game is a great feeling and attending a game in person is an experience unlike any other. However, the Jacksonville Jaguars might try to ruin that by continuously streaming the NFL RedZone channel on their new video boards at EverBank Field.
The Jaguars’ fan base is one of the worst in the NFL, but that’s not the team’s fault. The organization isn’t even 20 years old and as Jaguars president Mark Lamping recently pointed out, many football fans in Jacksonville are transplants. However, that doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to make EverBank Field a party site for a bunch of misplaced NFL fans.
Jaguars owner Shahid Khan is working very hard to try and build a fan base in Jacksonville, which is a tough task and will likely result in the team eventually re-locating to Los Angeles. In the meantime, following through with this idea to cater to the fantasy football enthusiasts of the world would essentially kill the quest to create a true Jaguars fan base that rivals others in the NFL.
Many will argue the Jaguars will be leading the way in the adaptation process for the NFL in the digital age so the fan experience will be more tailored to social media and fantasy football. That’s very true, but it still isn’t a smart move from a business or sports standpoint.
NFL teams (producers) put their product out there for fans (consumers) on Sundays, so by intentionally drawing the fans’ attention away from the game live on the field in front of them, are the teams not thus purposely making their product less attractive? On the same note, it’s a sporting event. No one — and I mean no one — likes the person reading a book or Facebooking at a game, so why encourage such behavior as it applies to fantasy football?
Now from the Jaguars’ perspective, they’re simply trying to put people in the seats because that’s been a struggle for this franchise that has knocked on the door of relevancy several times in its short history. But to finally kick that door down, Jacksonville needs the fans to be interested in the Jaguars, not the giant television screen at their stadium.
This idea just doesn’t make sense all the way around and sports fans everywhere who absolutely cherish the opportunity to attend games in person should be horrified and offended by this. Alternatives would be streaming the RedZone channel during halftime and in between quarters, which is what many NFL stadiums do already. But broadcasting it live throughout the entire game would be suicidal to the Jaguars’ relevancy as an NFL franchise.