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NFL salary cap could be ‘a lot lower than expected’ in 2021

Jesse Reed
NFL, field
Nov 24, 2019; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; General overall view of the NFL shield logo at midfield at MetLife Stadium. The Jets defeated the Raiders 34-3. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

We already knew that the NFL stands to lose a lot of money if fans are not permitted or are limited during games in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to spike in parts of America, is and will continue to cost big business big money.

Now, we’re learning even more about what the NFLPA expects may happen this year, and how it will affect things in the future.

NFL salary cap could be ‘a lot lower than expected’ in 2021

The NFLPA did a conference call Monday to discuss the current state of affairs heading into the summer months and training camps. Tony Pauline of Pro Football Network was on top of the call from the start and provided a ton of pertinent information.

One of the nuggets he shared is that “The NFLPA is preparing agents on the real possibility the 2021 salary cap could be a lot lower than expected.”

During the call, the NFLPA explained that the NFL could lose up to $3 billion in revenue if fans are not allowed to attend games this season.

Per Pauline: “The NFLPA states that a season without fans would be a $3-plus billion loss of revenue, which would impact the salary cap next season. Because of this possibility, the NFLPA is preparing for a potential drop in the 2021 salary cap due to a loss of revenue from the 2020 season.”

This “$3 billion-plus” number is actually low compared to other estimates that have been put out there by independent companies that sell tickets.

NFL still planning on having fans attend games when the schedule begins

The United States is by no means finished with the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, while the second wave has yet to arrive as many experts fear it will in the fall, 20 states are seeing significant spikes in positive test results. Now, the NFL is seeing multiple players test positive before training camps even begin.

Nevertheless, the NFL is pushing forward with plans for fans to attend games once the regular-season schedule starts in September.