Report: NFL considering making first few rows of seats at stadiums off limits to fans for safety reasons
The 2020 NFL season is still scheduled to start on time, but no one knows what the fan situation at stadiums will be.
On Wednesday, Ben Fischer of SportsBusinessDaily.com reported that the NFL is considering doing something with the first few rows of seats, no matter how many fans are able to attend.
In the interest of player safety, the report says the NFL will keep fans out of the first 6 to 8 rows of seats to keep them further away from players. However, as these things often are, this is also a chance for sponsorship money:
Under a plan shared with team presidents on Tuesday, the first six to eight rows of seating in every stadium — including on-field suites — will be off limits to fans this season. That move is officially to protect players, coaches and team staff from coronavirus exposure, but it would also free up that space to become lucrative sponsorship assets.
The report says this move could “significantly defray” potential pandemic-related losses in ad revenue and ticket sales.
This is still an early plan, but keeping fans away from players even by 6-8 rows does seem like something that could prevent the potential spread of COVID-19. We’ll see what happens with this plan in the coming weeks.