The NFL will be releasing its 2020 schedule on Thursday, albeit without any international games due to the coronavirus pandemic.
At this point, the season is looked to be played without fans in the stands and that is going to hurt local economies dearly.
“Could the NFL move its schedule back, too? I don’t think it’s crazy to consider. Two teams estimated to me that, on average, NFL clubs would lose about $100 million apiece in local revenue if the season was played without fans in the stands. So when I asked if, given the choice, those in charge would rather start Sept. 1 without fans or Nov. 1 with them, one NFC team exec didn’t mince words: “I don’t think it’s even a question. If you could play a full season with fans, I don’t see how you don’t go that way. The economic impact is too major. If it’s possible to play it with fans by pushing it back, I don’t even see what we’d be discussing.”
As of right now, nothing has changed on the schedule, as the season is slated to begin on Sept. 10 with 16 games played over 17 weeks. The Super Bowl remains unchanged and will be played on Feb. 7 in Tampa.
In case of a drastic change, the Super Bowl could be pushed back if needed.
“How far could the league move the Super Bowl back? It’s a fair question. A source told me that the league requires, with every Super Bowl bid, that cities hold extra dates in case the game has to be moved. So Tampa presumably has those. That said, one team exec told me the league probably wouldn’t want to move the Super Bowl past the start of the 2021 league year, which comes in mid-March. Moving that date would require negotiation with the union.”
For now, everything is just a wait and see on whether the deadly disease gets worse or better as cities and states slowly began to open back up.