The NFL is still planning to forge ahead with the 2020 regular season starting on Sept. 10 between the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans.
Whether this is a likelihood amid the ongoing pandemic remains to be seen. A lot of it will depend on how the United States flattens the curve and if widespread COVID-19 testing is available.
However, there’s something else to consider that’s not talked about a lot. The finances. The NFL’s salary cap has been projected to rise considerably over the next several seasons. However, the possibility of playing games without fans in attendance could impact this.
According to NFL Media, the league and players still need to come to an agreement on a new cap model before the 2020 season can even start. While there’s hope on this front, the report made one thing clear.
“While there is no deadline, the hope is to have agreements reached before training camps open, which is scheduled for late July,” the report read. “Theoretically, the NFLPA and NFL could talk throughout the preseason, but beginning the regular season without a deal is not considered feasible, sources say.”
The NFL’s cap is tied in large part to its revenue stream. If games have to be played without fans in attendance this coming season, both financial aspects will be impacted big time.
The overall goal is that the cap still goes up or remains flat. However, that seems to be unrealistic at this point.
There is some good news on this front. Unlike Major League Baseball, it doesn’t seem like there’s a major financial rift between the NFL and its players. There’s certainly some optimism on this front.
But like everything else pandemic related, this is all about the virus itself. The NFL had previously hoped to have fans in attendance this season. A new policy set forth in Texas could add to that. However, policies in other states change the dynamic in a big way.