The NFL 2020 season is expected to start on schedule despite the coronavirus still dominating headlines across the world.
The global pandemic has devastated the sporting calendar across the United States, with the NBA being the first league in the world to announce it’s cancellation.
The NFL was no exception with the 2020 draft taking place virtually instead of in Las Vegas as slated last week, with relative success.
Yesterday, League Spokesman Brian McCarthy confirmed the league plans to release its schedule for the NFL 2020 season by May 9.
The 101st season is expected to kick off on September 10 and conclude with Super Bowl LV in Tampa Bay on February 7, 2021.
Despite this being the official stance of the league, it is believed schedule-makers are in the process of designing several versions of the NFL 2020 season.
According to the Sports Business Daily, this includes a Super Bowl on February 28, the regular season starting as late as Thursday, October 15 and a season without by weeks or a Pro Bowl.
Commissioner Roger Goodell has said the league is prepared to make changes in the face of coronavirus-induced uncertainty.
It is unclear whether the potential scenarios have been discussed with the NFLPA – the players’ union – with whom the league recently ratified a new collective bargaining agreement through the 2030 season.
As part of that agreement, the league recently announced it would officially expand its playoffs to include 14 teams, two wild-cards for each conference beginning this postseason.
It is also unclear whether the preseason or the five scheduled international games would still be part of the NFL 2020 season.