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How much will you save if there’s an NFL lockout?

Apr 22, 2011, 12:02 PM EDT


The following post is reprinted in its entirety with permission by

By Sarah Sprague

A few weeks ago, my husband and I were out walking the dog and discussing the NFL lockout. What we’d miss, how crappy it was to come back from the NHL lockout as a fan, what we thought was wrong with both the owners and the pla… No, just the owners side.

As we were talking I asked, “I wonder how much money we’ll save if there isn’t football this fall.”

“At least a thousand or so bucks,” Bry guessed.

So I decided to figure out the rough amount, based on our home viewing and entertaining, going out to the bar once or twice a season for a game, usually attending one road Steeler game if they’re on the West Coast, buying a few new t-shirts, headbands, novelties and so on.

$3,639.89 by my rough calculation, and I’m sure that amount is low (*cough* only $50 a week in snacks for us and our guests *cough*). That’s just an average season not including any playoff trips for us — don’t ask what that number was, nor does it include the value of the number of hours devoted to watching, talking about and writing about the NFL.

Some line items made our football experience pretty expensive. DirecTV’s Sunday Ticket sticks out as being a bit pricey, as does traveling to at least one game which means buying tickets on the overinflated secondary market. Our friend’s pick’em league is another, which in all these years we’ve never won. Really, the whole gambling section is a loss for us, but I am sure there are some who do much better than we do. Then again, we’re not season ticket holders and don’t have tailgating costs to think about, so I’m guessing our spending falls at the higher end of the middle-spenders.

Want to figure out how much you may save if there is an NFL lockout?

Go to the story on my site, and scroll down to the spending graph. Select “Click to edit” and the tab for “Lockout Savings Blank Template” to enter your own spending habits. Use the average amount you spend on any one item and enter the number of times a season you spend that amount. I’ve also posted our spreadsheet data as a guide to follow if you need it.

I didn’t include items like a new TV which are often included in fan spending, mostly because I view electronics as a whole home purchase. That same logic lead me exclude our Sirius/XM subscription, which while is great for football, isn’t the only thing we use it for. But if you want to include those, feel free to add it in.

Don’t worry, I cannot see what you enter and none of this data is being saved anywhere. But please, feel free to say in the comments what your total savings came out to be and what you might do with your newly found money this fall if there is a lockout.


I’m thinking of Hawaii or maybe doing something responsible like putting it all into our retirement fund.

  1. fatcatt - Apr 23, 2011 at 11:59 PM

    Just think what this will cost DTV sunday ticket. Are they one of the networks who had to pay upfront? I had to get out of that as it was ridiculous to pay that as much as i love football. Anyway figure what you pay and avg. that for everyone similar to you. Alot of people are saving and alot of people-businesses are losing. And i totally agree with you with the NHL lockout. Im a diehard flyers fan and only watched the finals last season. Just have never been able to get back into it and the longer i go without the easier it is to not tune back in to hockey in general because I miss it even less now and have lost touch with so many players. I dont even know who most of the players are anymore. Sad! It was the best to watch

    • balewsquare - Apr 25, 2011 at 5:09 AM

      You’re missing out. It was hard to get back into, but I’m hooked again. I honestly cannot watch other sports. They’re too slow, too predictable. Nothing like playoff hockey!