It’s still unknown whether fans will be allowed to attend NFL games in 2020, but if they do, the level of stadium capacity could depend on which state their favorite team calls home.
Daniel Kaplan of The Athletic reported Tuesday that, “The NFL will let teams set different attendance capacity limits when the schedule starts in August with the preseason, meaning some clubs could play in front of full, or nearly full stadiums and some before no fans.”
We’ve seen throughout the COVID-19 pandemic that some states have been hit harder than others. There’s also been a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in several states as governors and other local officials reopen the economy.
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In the latest “Boston Sports Tonight” quick take, NBC Sports Boston Patriots insider Phil Perry reacted to The Athletic’s report. Perry explains how some teams could benefit more than others from different stadium capacity levels, as well as the financial concerns behind these decisions on attendance.
“This is a fascinating story because it pits against one another two things that ownership cares about,” Perry said. “No. 1, obviously, is making money. They’re a business, that makes sense, but if there are no fans in the stands, the NFL is set to lose about 20 percent of its annual revenue. They want to shrink that number as much as possible. That’s why they’re even talking about this — trying to get fans in the stands.
“No. 2 is something owners really care about — most of them, at least — is winning, competitive balance. That, to me, is one thing that stands out immediately first and foremost aside from the obvious health concerns and questions we would have for people going to these games. The competitive balance part of it where you could have stadiums that are at full capacity one week, and then you could have stadiums that are at zero percent capacity or 10 percent capacity. Some teams could have significant homefield advantages, whereas others wouldn’t. I would say the report we saw today from The Athletic would indicate, at least right now, as far as these talks are going, owners care about being able to shrink that 20 percent number even if it means a competitive disadvantage for a handful of organizations.”
Check out the full conversation between Perry and Tom Giles in the video below, and be sure to watch Boston Sports Tonight weeknights at 10 p.m. ET.
Will NFL allow fans in stadiums on a case-by-case basis? originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston