The vital importance of the upcoming NFL Draft to the Dolphins is most evident in their ongoing struggle to sell tickets.
The Dolphins literally couldn’t give away tickets last season. Fan disdain has continued to grow amid reports of season-ticket sales for 2012 at about half the 60,000 level it reached in 2005.
That is also reflected in the ticket resale market. According to the ticket search engine SeatGeek.com, Dolphins tickets are among the least expensive in the NFL for the upcoming season, with only two of the team’s eight home games ranking in the top half of 2012 NFL games in terms of average price.
Will Flaherty, of SeatGeek, provided the following analysis of Dolphins ticket prices for 2012:
Dolphins tickets are some of the least in demand throughout the league. Their most expensive ticket, Dec. 2 against the Patriots, is only the 96th most expensive ticket in the league right now. Also, their four least expensive games all rank in the bottom quartile of all NFL games in terms of average ticket price.
The average price for the visit by the Patriots is $221.
The most expensive ticket in the NFL is for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos’ game at New England on Oct. 7. On average, tickets to that game have been listed at $486 on secondary markets.
Four of the Dolphins’ home games are priced on average at $135 or below.
The second-most expensive Dolphins' home game is for their other traditional rival, the Jets on Sept. 23. Right now on secondary markets, the average asking price for a ticket to that game is $187, which is almost 20 per cent less than tickets for the Patriots game, SeatGeek found.
The Dolphins' home opener against the Oakland Raiders on Sept. 16 ($144), and their game against the Buffalo Bills on Dec. 23 ($138) round out their top four most expensive home games, based on resale prices.
The Dolphins are selling season-ticket packages but have not yet made single-game tickets available.
As for the least expensive games, according to SeatGeek,the cheapest ticket right now on average is the St. Louis Rams' visit on Oct. 14, with an average list price of $119. That's in the bottom 30 games in terms of ticket prices this year.
Apparently not much interest in seeing the handiwork of new Rams coach Jeff Fisher, who spurned the Dolphins in their recent coaching search.
Tickets to see the Tennessee Titans play in Miami on Nov. 11 are slightly more expensive, averaging $125 on secondary markets. Home games against the Seattle Seahawks on Nov. 25 ($129), and the Jacksonville Jaguars on Dec. 16 ($134) complete the list of the four least expensive Dolphins home games.