LANDOVER, Md. — The Washington Football Team announced Wednesday that there will be no fans in attendance for games at FedEx Field during the 2020 season.
Washington Football Team To Kick Off 2020 Season Without Fans At FedExFieldhttps://t.co/UjDoaabopE
— Washington Football Team (@WashingtonNFL) August 12, 2020
The decision came after Washington worked in close coordination with State of Maryland and Prince George’s County officials to develop a comprehensive health and safety plan. Ultimately the team, out of an abundance of caution the COVID-19 Pandemic and its ever-changing dynamics, made the decision to play their 2020 season home games without the presence of fans in the stands. This decision will be open to reevaluation should the pandemic situation improve during the season.
Washington owner Daniel Snyder said Tuesday “We are fortunate to host the best fans in the NFL year after year, but the well-bring of these supporters, along with that of our players, coaches and each and every member of our gamebday staff is simply too important, and the current knowledge of COVID-19 too unpredictable, to welcome our fan base to FedEx Field to start the season.” He went on to add “We were the first team in the league to recall our scouts and other personnel from the field back in mid-March and have been monitoring this evolving situation ever since. This decision was not an easy one, but after several discussion with federal, state and local officials – along with the input from some of the nation’s foremost medical experts, based right here in the nation’s capital – we are confident that it is the right one. We are working to find ways to make our fans’ presence felt in new and innovative ways for 2020 and can’t wait to welcome the community through the gates as soon as it’s safe.”
This could mean the team is looking into ways similar to what Major League Baseball, with fans buying cardboard cutouts of themselves to sit in the stands, or the NBA with virtual fans on video screens in the “stands.” The team has also reached out to season ticket holders with “financial alternatives” for their ticket plans and are prepared to answer any and all questions from individual game ticket holders for 2020. The team also plans to use their website and social media accounts to inform fans of ways they can cheer on the team, virtually, by their Week 1 kickoff against the Philadelphia Eagles.
This announcement comes the day after two major college football conferences, the Big Ten and Pac-12, announced they were canceling their fall football seasons in hope of playing games in the spring.