Allegiant Stadium, home of the Las Vegas Raiders
May 29, 2020; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; General overall aerial view of Las Vegas Raiders helmet and Wilson 2020 NFL The Duke official football at the Allegiant Stadium construction site. The stadium will be the home of the Las Vegas Raiders and the UNLV Rebels football teams. It is located on about 62 acres of land west of Mandalay Bay at Russell Road and Hacienda Avenue and between Polaris Avenue and Dean Martin Drive, just west of Interstate 15. Construction of the $1.8 billion stadium began on September 18, 2017 and is expected to be completed on July 31, 2020, in time for the 2020 NFL season and the 2020 NCAA season. Allegiant Stadium will serve as site of the Las Vegas Bowl beginning in 2020, which will feature a Pac-12 football opponent versus either a Big Ten or SEC opponent, as well as the 2020 and 2021 Pac-12 Football Championship Game. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Las Vegas Raiders are set to kick off their inaugural season in a new city and will open the state-of-the-art Allegiant Stadium in Week 2. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, fans won’t be allowed to attend games this year.

A week after team owner Mark Davis hinted that the Raiders would play in an empty Allegiant Stadium this season, the team officially confirmed its decision on Monday.

Raiders will play home games without fans in attendance for 2020 NFL season

NFL teams have wrestled with the decision of how stadium capacity will be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. While many will be allowing in significantly smaller crowds, the Raiders will be taking it one step further.

Davis made it clear during the offseason that he wouldn’t be comfortable attending games if fans weren’t allowed in at Allegiant Stadium. He was also against the team’s new building reducing its capacity through socially-distanced seating arrangements.

The decision is crushing for NFL fans in Las Vegas and will deal a massive financial hit for the Raiders. The club sold out its tickets for the 2020 season within months of them becoming available and are now offering full refunds to fans who made season-ticket payments.

It’s anticipated that the NFL could lose billions of dollars this year due to lost stadium revenue. With no fans entering Allegiant Stadium this year, the Raiders will be among the teams taking the biggest hit this year.

Matt Johnson
Writer at Sportsnaut. Journalism student at San Diego State University. Seen on MSN. Previously: eDraft, The Connection