What Will the NFL Look Like in the Age of COVID-19

COVID-19 continues to be problematic for sports, even though many sports leagues like the NBA, MLB, and MLS are beginning to get into the swing of the new normal. But what will the NFL look like in the age of COVID-19? This is the question many owners, GMs, players, staff, and fans are asking.

The MLB took a non-bubble approach, but had immediate setbacks. There are currently 20 Florida Marlins players and coaches who tested positive for coronavirus in the past week. This caused instant game cancellations for the Marlins and opponents.

MLB’s approach is to bring in the B-Team or C-Team to replace starters in the wake of the positive tests. However, many baseball enthusiasts believe this taints the already bizarre season.

The NFL will most likely follow the same non-bubble approach in the hopeful upcoming season. Or will they rethink the bubble. Like the NBA is doing, in order to keep COVID-19 at bay. And what about NFL betting online? How will the loss of starters and cancelled games be affected?

Thoughts On COVID-19 From The NFL

Radio silence from the National Football League is felt not just by fans, but also by the league’s teams, coaches, and players. And with NFL training camps across the U.S. resembling ghost towns, it is tough to imagine what the upcoming NFL season will be like.

Some players have expressed their need to know when it comes to the schedule and potential bubble. “If they have an eight game schedule somewhere over there on Park Ave., now might be a good time to let us know,” said one team executive. This came shortly after the MLB’s coronavirus outbreak.

Some executives want to get teams back on the grid-iron while others don’t see the rush. In fact, if the NFL does resume play in the fall, many want a shortened schedule, especially if the bubble play goes into effect.

Will An NFL Bubble Solve The COVID-19 Issue?

This is another interesting question that has come up as the NFL season quickly approaches. Having a bubble may not be less chaotic. For example, the MLS set up their bubble in Orlando, but matches were still cancelled, and some teams left altogether before the tournament even got rolling.

The NFL could prove similar, but as of right now, no bubble play has been decided. And a shortened season may not even be in the cards. Things could change. As the NBA and MLS prove results, and the MLB is kind of making it work, an NFL 16-game schedule may not be out of the question. Bubble or no bubble.

There is one thing for certain, the NFL is the titan of sports with hundreds on the roster and thousands making a single team work effectively and efficiently. There was a recent memo from the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) that explained how teams can slim down to 90 players.

And then comes the health risk factor for the NFL. Many teams have staff well over 60 years of age, and the giant size of many players increases coronavirus risk. This could also play into the decisions made in the upcoming weeks by players, teams, and the NFL. And what about the energy needed in stadiums via NFL fans?

The Future Of The 2020-2021 NFL Season

Will the NFL proceed with a 16-game schedule and travel like business as usual? Or will there be a reduced schedule with a bubble to protect against possible COVID outbreaks? The reality is that no one really knows. Quite possibly, the NFL has no clue what to do either.

As teams, coaches, players, and fans wait in the wings, it will be certainly interesting to see how the 2020-2021 NFL season moves forward. The NFL is a billion dollar business that is taking serious economic hits right now. Thinking that the season will not move forward in some form would be foolish. Too much money on the table.

Having fans fill stadiums is 35 percent of the NFL’s revenue alone. The loss of not having packed stadiums is estimated to cost the NFL around $5.5 billion. That could cripple the NFL, teams, and those who work to make the league work.

What do you think the NFL should do? Should they play this season like no pandemic is sweeping the nation? Should they hunker down somewhere near Disneyland and have a shortened schedule? What about the superbowl? Tell us your thoughts on the issue.

AFI
American Football International is your source for news and updates about American Football outside the United States!
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