Since the Washington Commanders announced last week that owners Dan and Tanya Snyder hired Bank of America Corp. to explore potential transactions of the NFL franchise, several suitors have reportedly emerged.
While it’s unclear who, if anyone, will buy the storied NFL team, what is clear is that Washington fans clearly support a full sale by the Snyders, according to a new Morning Consult survey.
Data shows that half of self-identified Commanders fans would support it if the Snyders sold the entire franchise and effectively ended their ownership of the Commanders, who have not won a playoff game since 2005 and have made the postseason only six times in the Snyders’ 23-year tenure as owners.
Informed Commanders fans (those who indicated they were aware of both the team’s potential sale and Snyder’s recent claim he has “dirt” on other NFL owners) were even more supportive of a full sale, with about two-thirds (67%) saying they want the Snyders to remove themselves from the franchise, which they purchased for $800 million in 1999.
More than a half dozen interested parties and proposed candidates to purchase the franchise have reportedly surfaced, including Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos and Hollywood mogul Byron Allen, who failed to buy the Denver Broncos in June.
Commanders Fans Support Full Sale of NFL Team
Commanders fans to Snyder: Please sell the team
- Commanders fans clearly supported a full sale of the franchise, while self-identified NFL fans were also in favor of the Snyders ending their ownership, with 43% saying they at least “somewhat support” the decision and 33% saying they would support it if the Snyders sold majority control but maintained a minority stake.
- More than 3 in 10 informed Commanders fans (35%) said they would oppose the Snyders selling a limited stake in the team but retaining majority ownership, making it the demographic’s least desirable option in the survey’s list of potential outcomes.
Jeff Bezos Is Commanders Fans’ Preferred Choice to Buy Franchise
Possible Commanders sale draws several interested billionaires
- Bezos earned 14% of the fan vote, making the 58-year-old billionaire the most preferred buyer among the reported interested parties included in the Morning Consult survey. His potential ownership group is said to include rapper Jay-Z and actor Matthew McConaughey, who’s also a co-owner of the MLS team Austin FC.
- More than 3 in 5 of informed Commanders fans (61%) said they were “unimpressed” with the team’s recent name change, followed by 54% who felt “annoyed” and “indifferent,” among a list of emotions.
Commanders are complicated
Anyone who purchases the historic-but-ailing franchise will step into a situation complicated by congressional and NFL investigations into allegations of workplace misconduct, sexual harassment and financial improprieties. Beyond that, the team itself has struggled to sell tickets: The Commanders ranked No. 3 in league attendance in the Snyders’ first season as owners but have since dropped to dead last as chants of “sell the team” have echoed throughout FedEx Field during the current campaign. Commanders fans could soon have their wish.
The Commanders did not respond to a request to comment on this story.
The Nov. 4-6, 2022 survey was conducted among a representative sample of 1,513 NFL fans and 373 Washington Commanders fans, with unweighted margins of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points and plus or minus 5 percentage points, respectively. The survey also included 198 self-identified Commanders fans who were aware of the team’s potential sale as well as Snyder’s claim he has “dirt” on other NFL owners, with an unweighted margin of error of plus or minus 7 percentage points.