As it turns out, a 7-9 record comes with a cost.
Following the Browns' best season since 2007, the club has hiked season ticket prices for the 2015 season.
Tom Reed of Cleveland.com broke the news today, as the team sent out renewal letters in the mail on Thursday.
While the Browns finished out the year with a five-game losing streak, the team's seven wins marked the most in seven years. The last time the team raised season ticket prices was back in 2008, following a 10-6 record and a near-playoff appearance in 2007.
According to Reed, season ticket prices for non-club level seats are set to increase from $19-85 to $25-110 per home game. This could result in a $60-250 increase over the course of an entire season (if not more). Browns President Alec Scheiner told Reed that the increase was overdue.
It's been seven years and at some point with the other teams in the NFL and the other teams in our division we have to ... I think the product is getting better on an off the field but more importantly given the way the secondary market was for are tickets where we saw some people selling tickets on the average of two times the face value we just felt the market was telling us it was time.
According to data from Team Marketing Report, Scheiner has a point. Of 32 NFL teams, the Browns ranked 31st in ticket prices in 2014.
As Jeff Schudel of The Morning Journal & The News-Herald reported:
The Browns report about 80 percent of season tickets in non-club seats cost $80 or less per game. The league average for similar seats is between $90 and $100.
Another positive aspect for the Browns is that not all season ticket holders will see a price hike. As Reed reported, prices for 8,350 of the stadium's 67,130 seats will not increase, or even decrease depending on the position of the seat. Upper-deck seating at the 50 yard line and the upper level of the end zone.
On the other hand, the Browns have compiled a 34-78 overall record, including 21-35 at home, since 2008. The club's last playoff appearance came in January 2003, following a 9-7 record in 2002. For those of you counting at home, it's been 4,407 days since the Browns have appeared in a playoff game.
The Browns face a tough home slate in 2015. The Browns will host Denver (12-4), Arizona (11-5), Pittsburgh (11-5), Baltimore (10-6), Cincinnati (10-5-1), San Francisco (8-8), Oakland (3-13), and Tennessee (2-14). Preseason opponents will be announced at a later date.
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