Goodell: NFL ticket sales could feel economic pinch in '09

NEW YORK -- NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says the real impact of the economic downturn could hit the league next spring, when teams start selling tickets for the 2009 season.

The pain from the downturn is starting to hit much of the sports world. For example, Major League Baseball attendance was down slightly this season and the LPGA Tour announced a schedule with three fewer events.

But the NFL has been largely immune, thanks partly to tickets that were sold months ago.

Speaking to The Associated Press on Friday, Goodell said the round of ticket-buying next spring for the 2009 season is when the NFL may feel the pinch of the downturn.