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One of the most hotly debated topics since COVID-19 hit among Raider Nation is how it will affect attendance for the grand opening of Allegiant Stadium. The NFL has maintained that they plan on keeping the schedule on track and give individual teams & local regulations the opportunity to decide who will be in the stands on gameday.
The first domino fell when the NFL announced they will block off the first 6-8 rows of every stadium as a barrier to the field. This will impact some of the Raider’s most passionate fans, including the Black Hole. How they will deal with this, especially considering Allegiant Stadium sold all the PSL’s will have to be addressed.
But that’s news you probably already knew. The first difinitive plan for fans has been announced by the Baltimore Ravens.
Here’s an excerpt from Pro Football Talk on NBC Sports:
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The Ravens don’t know if fans will be in the building when they host the Browns in Week One of the 2020 regular season, but they do know they won’t be at full capacity if fans are allowed in M&T Bank Stadium.
The team sent an email to season ticket holders on Wednesday informing them that they are limiting attendance to less than 14,000 people due to safety protocols put in place to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The stadium has a capacity of just over 71,000 fans.
“To offer a proper level of safety for fans who want to attend games, a reduction in capacity is necessary,” Ravens president Dick Cass said in a statement. “We are disappointed that this will be a disruption for many ticket buyers, but we have an obligation to our fans and our community to keep M&T Bank Stadium as safe as possible.”Pro Football Talk, NBC Sports
If we take this as a template that other teams may use, that could mean that 20-25% of the capacity would be limited at stadiums across the NFL. With a nearly 100% sold out Allegiant Stadium, this means that season ticket holders would be looking at either a complete refund and priority for single game seats or if they split the season up, no more than 2-3 games this year.
Other considerations have been to make fans sign a waiver. In addition, requiring masks, rolling/socially distancing at arrival procedures, and pre-made/wrapped food and drink options are also likely being considered.
Overall, it’s looking more and more likely that changes beyond canceling some preseason games will likely be arriving. If the Ravens give us any indication, the news will likely be coming soon and could be fairly drastic in the number of disruptions to the inaugural season at Allegiant Stadium.
That said, nothing has been provided to season ticket holders for the Raiders yet, so we don’t have anything official to report. We will keep you posted here and on Twitter @VegasRaidersGD.