NFL logo at midfield during Jets football game
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

The 2020 NFL season is drawing closer and while there is plenty of uncertainty for how many games will be played, the NFL is already bracing for a massive revenue hit this year.

As the league and players’ union continue negotiating a plan for the 2020 season, with an agreement needed for players to take the field, the NFLPA is bracing for big problems in 2021.

2021 NFL salary cap expected to drop due to league revenue hit

NFL teams are bracing for monumental changes that will see stadiums empty or with significantly reduced capacity during the upcoming season. With billions of dollars in stadium revenue likely out the door, reality is setting in for everyone around the league.

According to Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, the NFLPA disclosed in a conference call Wednesday that it is preparing for a potential drop in the salary cap next year. Projecting $3-plus billion in potential lost revenue, the NFL could see tens of millions shaved off its 2021 salary cap.

Over the weekend, the union proposed a flat cap for the 2021 season. The plan would see the NFL hold its $198.2 million cap into next season, borrowing from future years to help stabilize the lost money from this season.

However, it now seems like that scenario might be less of a possibility. Instead, the NFL and NFLPA would need to agree on how much of the revenue hit will reduce next year’s salary cap, a decision that would carry major implications on countless players and every team.

The NFL saw its cap increase by $10-plus million for the sixth consecutive year this offseason, according to CBS Sports. It was feeling even better about even more money coming in with a new CBA signed and record-setting television deals already being negotiated.

Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought all of that into question. Paired with the concerns NFL stars are expressing over the league’s safety protocols, things aren’t looking promising for the league right now.

Matt Johnson
NFL, MLB & college football writer for Sportsnaut. Graduated from San Diego State University with BA in Journalism, 2019. Grew up in Sacramento, now based in Indianapolis. Seen on MSN. Previously: eDraft, The Connection, With the First Pick