The current contract between NFL owners and the players association expires at midnight. Without a deal, Ford Field in Detroit will sit empty during the Lions scheduled pre-season and regular season home games this fall.
A study commissioned by the players association says $20 million is spent on average in NFL cities during regular season home games. In some cities, much more is spent. The Christian Science Monitor reports small businesses may pay a big price.
Jesse David is a senior vice president with Edgeworth Economics, the company that did the study. David admits people will probably spend money on some form of entertainment, whether or not they go to a game, but they may not spend it in Detroit.
“It may be that someone else, somewhere else sees their income go up…but there’s still going to be an effect on a group of people.”
Even if they miss tonight’s deadline, NFL owners and players still have several months before games will have to be canceled or rescheduled.