With almost 85,000 fans packing FedEx Field in Landover Sunday, the lines were long at the Phillips Seafood Express and Hooters restaurants inside the Washington Redskins’ stadium.
Nearby hotels such as the Courtyard by Marriott New Carrollton attracted more visitors than they would have otherwise during the first weekend of January.
“Whenever the Redskins play at FedEx Field, we get a jump” in bookings, said Zane Andrews, operations manager of the Courtyard New Carrollton. “So having the playoff game helps us this weekend. We just didn’t get the bump we expected — occupancy was about 50 percent full, and we expected to get between 70 percent and 80 percent.”
Meanwhile, in Baltimore the same day, some 71,000 fans attended another NFL playoff game in Maryland, won by the Baltimore Ravens. It was the first time the state had hosted two NFL playoff games on the same day, said Ross Taylor, a spokesman for the Redskins.
The economic impact of a Ravens playoff game alone is about $20 million, some $5 million more than a regular season game, according to Anirban Basu, chairman and CEO of Baltimore economic and policy consulting firm Sage Policy Group.
In just state tax revenue, each home game of the Redskins and Ravens generates about $2 million apiece, according to a study last year by the Maryland Comptroller’s Office. That includes direct sources such as income taxes paid by players and other employees and sales taxes from concession stands and merchandise, as well as indirect sources like alcohol taxes collected from restaurants and hotel taxes.
“Employees, visiting and home team fans and members of the media travel to these two stadiums,” the comptroller’s report says. “This brings in state and local revenues from sources such as the motor fuel tax, parking taxes, hotel occupancy taxes and public transportation fares.”