The Rams named Jeff Fisher head coach on Jan. 17, setting off an avalanche of important long term moves for the franchise.
It’s been little more than two months since the 2011 season ended for the Rams. And though they’ve played no games in that time, it hasn’t stopped them from making moves that will dramatically affect the long term future of the franchise.
The hiring of veteran coach Jeff Fisher on Jan. 17 set the tone and was followed soon after by the hiring of innovative young general manager Les Snead and an experienced and talented coaching staff.
That group, along with chief operating officer Kevin Demoff, went right to work on rebuilding the franchise by making a blockbuster trade well in advance of April’s NFL Draft. The Rams will complete a trade with Washington today that should make the Rams power brokers in the NFL Draft for each of the next three years and possibly beyond.
With all of that effort spent on changing the fortunes of the team on the field, the Rams have announced that fans hoping to bear witness to a turnaround will be able to do so for the same price – or in some cases less – than they paid in 2011.
“I think one thing that our ownership group has demonstrated is that we want to be one of the pre-eminent franchises in the National Football League,” Jake Bye, Rams director of ticket sales and premium seating, said. “To do that, it starts at the top. We went out and hired a proven head coach that was easily the most desired candidate in the offseason. On top of that, we are very well positioned to improve the roster via free agency and with the recent trade, we will be able to build a solid foundation through the draft. Of all the teams in the NFL, I think we have proven we are going to think big, we are going to swing for the fences and we are going to provide every means possible to improve the product on the field. We’re doing all of this with the goal of making the experience of being a Rams season ticket holder more valuable than ever without passing the cost along to our stakeholders.”
Across the board, the Rams froze season ticket prices this year and even dropped the price in a few selected seating areas. While the bulk of the prices remain the same, Bye said the prices actually dropped this year in a few popular seating destinations.
Included in the price drop areas are several upper level sections between the end zones and a handful of upper level loge box seats. For fans looking to get seats or potentially upgrade to seats in the lower bowl, the Rams have reduced the price on a number of seats in the end zone in front of the popular Bud Light Party Zone.
While the deadline for renewals is set for its usual early May timeframe, fans that opt to renew their season tickets or purchase new ones by April 2 will be given an official 2012 Rams sideline hat. A special lanyard for each ticket will go to season ticket holders who renew by the May 1 deadline.
According to Bye, the advantage of buying now is the opportunity to get not only the frozen or reduced rate on seats but also first crack at the best available ticket locations. The team will again put up partial season ticket packages and single game seats in July and August. When that happens, the selection of seats dims dramatically.
In addition, the Rams have found ways to make purchasing those tickets more pliable for people looking to get in on the action. For those that don’t want to pay for their tickets in total upfront, the team offers a six-month, interest free payment plan that allows fans to spread their payments out without penalty.
Beyond the normal benefits of being a season ticket holder, the Rams have added more value to the pot this year.
In April, the Rams will hold a special NFL Draft preview event at Rams Park with the team’s key decision makers. That event will be limited to season ticket holders.
In August, the Rams will hold the first “Fan Fest” event, which will include a scrimmage at the Edward Jones Dome followed by an autograph signing with the players. The exclusive event will be free to all season ticket holders.
Special events aren’t the only way the Rams are looking to take care of their season ticket holders this year. For ticket holders on the club level, they will have the opportunity to get bottomless Pepsi products and popcorn throughout games after an initial purchase.
Season ticket holders will continue to play a prominent part in this year’s fan appreciation game and also have some opportunities for selected bottomless concessions.
All told, the Rams are hoping to provide fans with maximum value at a minimum price.
“Our goal is to provide entertaining and competitive football, and a team our season ticket holders and really the entire region can be proud of,” Bye said. “While doing that, we also want to make sure that we keep the price of attending our home games as competitive as possible. We will do that through our ticket pricing but also through creative offerings through vendors and our partners with merchandise and concessions on game day. We want to provide a good value in coming to a Rams game and reward the tremendous loyalty of our fans.”