SBD/23/Franchises

NFL NEWS & NOTES: IS NEW YORK BECOMING THE TUNA'S TOWN?

          NEWSDAY's Joe Gergen writes today on the NFL football
     scene in New York: "Who owned New York?  There wasn't much
     doubt, even when the Giants were stumbling through the Ray
     Handley hangover or Dan Reeves' lame-duck season a year ago. 
     But from the moment Leon Hess introduced Bill Parcells as
     head coach and chief of football operations officer on Feb.
     11, interest in the Jets has grown to the extent that it now
     threatens to overtake the NFL's flagship franchise. ... The
     [Giants'] erosion of support that began under Reeves appears
     to be continuing under [new head coach Jim] Fassel. ... The
     Giants still have a longer waiting list for season tickets,
     deeper roots in the community and one more Super Bowl trophy
     than the Jets. ... By contrast, the Jets offer a vision of
     progress. ... The image of Parcells is everywhere."  Gergen
     concludes that "obviously the [Jets] fans have gotten the
     message" as evidence by the near capacity crowds that
     attended the team's first two home games (NEWSDAY, 9/23).
          NOTE: In DC, Thomas Heath reports that Sunday's
     Jaguars-Redskins game will be listed as a sellout despite
     club seats remaining.  The Redskins have more than 1,500 of
     the club seats -- which cost between $99 and $199 a game --
     left to be sold (WASHINGTON POST, 9/23).

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