Bills season tickets sales second most in history

Courtesy of Democrat & Chronicle:

Despite the Buffalo Bills failing to make the playoffs for 16 consecutive seasons, the longest drought in North American pro sports, fans just can’t stay away.

Bills season ticket sales for the 2016 season have concluded at 58,535, the team has announced. That’s the second-highest total in the franchise’s 57-year history, following last year’s record of 60,102.

Before that the record was 57,500 during the height of the Bills’ four-year Super Bowl run. The top two years for season ticket sales in team history have now occurred under owners Terry and Kim Pegula with Rex Ryan as head coach.

Last year’s historic level of season ticket sales actually produced a waiting list as the team capped sales in the 60,000 range in order to preserve a supply of seats available to the public for purchase on an individual game basis.

The re-newel rate for season tickets was at 91 percent at one point, Bills president Russ Brandon said. And while a total of 8,000 season ticket holders chose not to renew by a spring deadline, a total of 6,433 were gained back by people on the waiting list and through a public sale.

There remains a 1,300-person waiting list for some prime seat categories that are sold out at New Era Field (formerly Ralph Wilson Stadium).

While season ticket sales have officially concluded for this season, someone wanting to purchase a season ticket would not be turned away since the total is below the 60,000 cap, Scott Berchtold, Bills senior vice president/communications said.

The Bills previously announced that five of eight regular season home games have already sold out. Individual game tickets do remain for Jacksonville Nov. 27, Cleveland Dec.18 and Miami Dec. 24. There are also a limited number of club seats available. Buffalo opens the NFL season Sept. 11 at Baltimore then hosts the New York Jets, Ryan’s old team, on Thursday, Sept. 15 in prime time.