Goodell: Lockout 'clearly has had impact on fans'

The NFL lockout, now in its 11th week, hasn’t been without consequences.

Commissioner Roger Goodell acknowledged as much earlier today when he met with media after the spring NFL meetings came to a conclusion in Indianapolis.

Goodell indicated ticket sales have been impacted and when you talk about that, you’re talking about a bottom line for the 32 owners in the NFL.

Clearly it has had an impact on the fans," Goodell said, according to the Associated Press. “We see it in various metrics. There's been a noticeable change, TV ratings were down on the draft roughly 4 million people. NFL.com traffic (is down), we see that.

“Fans want certainty. We can't underestimate that the fans are going through challenges just in the general economy.”

The longer the situation goes without a resolution, the greater the affect. Obviously, if the regular season doesn’t start on time – or if games are lost – there is going to be a dramatic impact. To that end, Goodell said a drop-dead date “obviously is coming” for the NFL to kick off the 2011 season Sept. 8 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay.

“We've made it clear that (revenue loss) is current and will continue to accelerate and impact on the ability of ownership to make an offer (the players) find attractive,” Goodell said.

Where it heads from here, no one knows. The next major step will be a hearing before the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis on June 3. Thing is, a ruling from that hearing could take several weeks to come. In the meantime, damage will continue to be done.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

Upcoming Games

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Cleveland +5.5 -110

Tennessee -5.5 -110

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Indianapolis -3.5 -110

Houston +3.5 -110

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Detroit +3 -110

Chicago -3 -110

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Jacksonville +10 -110

Minnesota -10 -110

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Las Vegas -9 -110

NY Jets +9 -110

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

New Orleans -3 -120

Atlanta +3 -120

@

Dec 6th, 1:00 PM

Cincinnati +11.5 -110

Miami -11.5 -110

@

Dec 6th, 4:05 PM

NY Giants +11 -110

Seattle -11 -110

@

Dec 6th, 4:05 PM

LA Rams -3 -120

Arizona +3 -120

@

Dec 6th, 4:25 PM

New England 0 -110

LA Chargers 0 -110

@

Dec 6th, 4:25 PM

Philadelphia +8.5 -110

Green Bay -8.5 -110

@

Dec 6th, 8:20 PM

Denver +14 -110

Kansas City -14 -110

@

Dec 7th, 5:00 PM

Washington +7 -110

Pittsburgh -7 -110

@

Dec 7th, 8:15 PM

Buffalo +1 -110

San Francisco -1 -110

@

Dec 8th, 8:05 PM

Dallas +7.5 -110

Baltimore -7.5 -110

@

Dec 10th, 8:20 PM

New England +6.5 -110

LA Rams -6.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Houston -1.5 -110

Chicago +1.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Tennessee -9.5 -110

Jacksonville +9.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Denver +4 -110

Carolina -4 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Minnesota +6 -110

Tampa Bay -6 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Arizona -3 -110

NY Giants +3 -110

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Kansas City -7.5 -111

Miami +7.5 -111

@

Dec 13th, 1:00 PM

Dallas -3 -110

Cincinnati +3 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:05 PM

NY Jets +14.5 -110

Seattle -14.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:05 PM

Indianapolis -2 -110

Las Vegas +2 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:25 PM

Green Bay -7.5 -110

Detroit +7.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:25 PM

Washington +4 -110

San Francisco -4 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:25 PM

Atlanta +1 -110

LA Chargers -1 -110

@

Dec 13th, 4:25 PM

New Orleans -6.5 -110

Philadelphia +6.5 -110

@

Dec 13th, 8:20 PM

Pittsburgh -2.5 +100

Buffalo +2.5 +100

@