As it stands, the 2020 NFL season is set to kick off Sept. 10 with the Houston Texans visiting the Kansas City Chiefs. But Dr. Anthony Fauci knows the coronavirus ultimately will be the deciding factor.
COVID-19 has swept the United States and has most of the sports world on hold. A decision hasn’t been made regarding the upcoming season, but a lot can happen between now and then.
Dr. Fauci on Monday expressed how, even though September still is four months away, the coronavirus “will make the decision” for the NFL.
“I think it’s feasible that negative-testing players could play to an empty stadium,” Fauci told NBC Sports’ Peter King. “Is it guaranteed? No way … If the virus is so low that even in the general community the risk is low, then I could see filling a third of the stadium or half the stadium so people could be six feet apart. … that’s something that is again feasible depending on the level of infection. I keep getting back to that: It’s going to depend.”
He noted, however, if all factors are the same as they are now, it would be “impossible” to have a season in September.
“Like, right now, if you fast forward, and it is now September … I say you can’t have a season — it’s impossible. There’s too much infection out there. It doesn’t matter what you do. But I would hope that by the time you get to September it’s not gonna be the way it is right now.”
We have no idea where we’ll stand with the pandemic come September. But judging from Dr. Fauci’s comments, we should hope for the best but expect the worst.