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The NFL amended its TV blackout rule last year, allowing teams to sell only 85 percent of its prime tickets to meet the threshold necessary to have home games broadcast locally. While the decision has done nothing but goose TV ratings even further, getting folks into the stadium on a regular basis in some cities remains a tough task.

Oakland and Jacksonville swath their stadiums in massive drapes that cover entire sections. It reduces capacity but hasn’t exactly increased demand. While the atmosphere has improved with the Raiders, only 81.4 percent of ticket holders make it to their seats. More than 10 percent of those with tickets in Jacksonville don’t bother to get an eyeful of one of the league’s worst teams.

Arizona quarterback Carson Palmer is prepping the Cardinals for an “interesting atmosphere” when they visit the Jaguars (1-8) on Sunday, where tickets are going for as low as $8 on StubHub. To be honest, he’s going to miss the opportunity to quiet a hostile environment, mostly because there likely won’t be one.

“You can’t worry about any of those outside distractions,” Palmer said. “You’ve just got to focus on doing your job each and every play, and do what it takes to win the game, regardless of how many people are watching or who is in the stands.”

Commissioner Roger Goodell continues to stress the in-game fan experience remains important to the league. It also remains important to the bottom lines of owners, if only to fatten their wallets.

When Personal Seat Licensing came into vogue, it created a new revenue stream by making fans plunk down thousands just for the right to buy tickets. It priced some longtime season ticket holders out of the market and as the U.S. economy sputtered, so did interest in making a significant financial commitment to get in the door when the living room can be just as inviting and significantly cheaper.

And owners continue to press for new stadiums even as evidence mounts that less might be more. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has turned AT&T Stadium into a virtual ATM since it opened in 2009. Dallas averages more than 86,000 fans a game, well over 100 percent capacity, even as the team continues to hover around .500.

The Falcons have barely been in the Georgia Dome two decades and already they’ve struck a deal on a new $1 billion building that will be ready by 2017.

The Steelers aren’t greedy enough to ask for new digs, but they are planning to add an additional 3,000 seats at Heinz Field, even though they’ve never averaged more than 63,458 per game since its debut in 2001. All that’s left is deciding who picks up most of the tab. The issue remains in the Pittsburgh courts, though whenever the expansion is complete, the same factors that fans face every Sunday will remain in place.

“It’s just how it works,” Cotchery said. “When you’re losing like (we did in New York), those decisions have to be made. Do I go to the game or do I not go to the game? I know it’s tough. “

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

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AP Sports Writers Joe Kay in Cincinnati and Doug Ferguson in Jacksonville, Fla., contributed to this report.