The 2020 NFL season is due to begin in just under two months. However, with the training camps being delayed and the potential for pre season to scrapped, will there be a NFL season in 2020?
We have already seen the Premier League be postponed in March before restarting in June. Both the NBA and NHL were postponed and are back to action at the end of this month.
The NFL was in the rather fortunate position unlike most other sports in that the season was not up and running and we were in the NFL off season when all sport stopped.
Now that the season is almost here, there is lots of panic that the season may not go ahead.
When the Kansas City Chiefs beat the San Francisco 49ers to Super Bowl 54 in Miami back in February, noone would have anticipated what would happen to the world and to the sporting calendar just over a month later.
There is alot of people anticipating no fans in stadiums, which has been the feature in all sports during the pandemic.
The Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars have already deferred their season tickets and are looking to potentially allow around 14,000 fans in their stadiums. This would allow there to be fans and for them to be social distant.
This was also considered for the FA Cup Final in Wembley.
However, there are many issues with this idea. In terms of the stadium itself, this is perfectly fine. It is more the issue of travel and getting fans to the stadium. We would see packed public transport, packed crowds outside the stadium as well as packed queues for food or drink.
Whilst having no fans is not great, i think everyone has to do what they can to stop the spread and i feel that it has to be either full fans or no fans at all. It may seem weird but hopefully it will be just for one season and then we can enjoy many seasons to come with full fans.
NFL SET TO PLAY TO EMPTY STADIUMS?
In terms of the 2020 season itself, i think that no fans would not impact upon the game itself. Teams may not have the home crowd to support them and give them the advantage but there is still the factor of home advantage and also hot or cold weather.
I think it would be a massive shame should the NFL season be cancelled, but one factor the NFL has over any other sport is time. No other sport in the world has a big a off season as the NFL season.
With the seven month off season, the NFL has the advantage of being able to amend the dates of games.
Super Bowl 55 is set for February 7th 2021 but that can easily be amended should the pandemic still be affecting the world of sport in two months time when the 2020 NFL season is due to begin.
Clearly the NFL is able to amend their schedule but they cannot change the dates too late as next season needs to be considered.
We have seen the Hall of Game cancelled that was scheduled to be played on August 6th between the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers.
We have also seen talk of the pre season being cancelled or reduced to just one game.
Whilst alot of the top players do not play in pre season, alot of players get their opportunities through pre season and even make the 53 man roster thanks to brilliant pre season game performances.
Philip Lindsay signed with the Denver Broncos as an unsigned free agent and broke into the final 53 man roster after an impressive pre season.
Having no pre season in 2020 may deny plenty of players opportunities.
In conclusion, i think that the 2020 season should go ahead even with no fans. We have seen other sports work without fans and this would be no different in the NFL.