The Miami Dolphins have not had a regular season home game blacked out on local television since 1998. To help keep that streak alive, the Dolphins will take advantage of the NFL's new blackout policy, Craig Davis of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports.
By lowering the threshold, the Dolphins will now need to sell 51,128 of the 60,500 non-premium seats at Sun Life Stadium to avoid a blackout.
"The thought process of why we're doing it is pretty basic; it's consistent with our philosophy over the last three years and probably longer which is to do everything possible we can to keep the games available on local television," Dolphins CEO Mike Dee said Friday.
"For us, these seats aren't killed seats," Dee added. They're still available for sale, and our goal would be to still sell the 60,500 per game."
Two days ago, the Oakland Raiders reportedly joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in taking advantage of the new policy, which requires teams that lower their threshold to share a greater percentage of ticket revenues with visiting teams.
Owner Stephen Ross has attempted to make Dolphins home games an event, but ticket sales have slumped as the club has posted losing records in six of the last eight seasons, making the playoffs just once since the league expanded to 32 teams.
Building buzz through HBO's "Hard Knocks" and avoiding an 0-7 start would help the team fill its stadium in 2012, but the reality of the situation is their non-divisional home schedule isn't particularly exciting and the team may need as much help as possible to keep the games on local television.