The good news for the NFL is that its London fan base is big enough that games at Wembley Stadium sell out quickly. The bad news is there’s a growing perception among the UK fan base that the NFL is a greedy interloper fixated on maximizing profits while pricing out average fans.
“We love the fact we get games here in the UK, but if tickets are ending up on resale sites for £500 [$700] a ticket, fans will opt to save their money and head to America to see the real action,” Fox writes. “Genuine fans are being priced out by greedy individuals and businesses. If this continues, the NFL will see less fans being able to attend games, and in turn fans confidence will be lost when it comes to a franchise.”
The NFL has become popular enough that it can sell out a stadium in London. But it wants to become popular enough to generate big television ratings in the UK. And a perception that it’s catering only to the fans who can afford the expensive tickets at Wembley could hold the league back in the long run.
As one executive whose team was actively evaluating the quarterbacks in the 2018 draft explained it to PFT, if the draft had been held immediately after the college football season ended, Mayfield likely would have been a high second-round pick. It was the work that was done from the middle of January until the end of April that pushed Mayfield to the point where he became the must-have guy.
Browns V.P. of player personnel Alonzo Highsmith recently gushed about Mayfield’s intangibles, and Highsmith wasn’t alone. As the source explained it to PFT, Mayfield blew people away with his demeanor, his words, and his way, once the process of talking to him and interacting with him began.
Enhancing that assessment was the information obtained as scouts learned more about Mayfield from those who had dealt with him in he past. Most prospects kiss the butts of the people they should; Mayfield is among the minority who had a reputation for treating very well the people who couldn’t help him. And that’s a very big deal when it comes to how teams separate one player from another, especially when none of the prospects stand out clearly and obviously above the rest based on physical abilities.