The NFL is supposedly moving forward with the 2020 season as currently scheduled, despite the global pandemic. Playing without fans in attendance may be a necessity to ensure player health and safety.
There's no doubt fan attendance is a significant aspect of professional sports contests. Fans can drastically impact the outcome of a game. Home-field advantage could be diminished if fans are prohibited from attending games, or if there's some sort of limited capacity rule this year.
NFL players have addressed the possibility of playing without fans in past weeks. Ravens QB Lamar Jackson is the latest to weigh in on the topic. He's hoping fans can attend games this season.
The 2019 NFL MVP thinks games without fans would feel like "practices," but "very serious practices." If fans are prohibited from attending games, players will have to adjust to the lack of crowd noise.
“It would feel like practice, but a very, very serious practice that counts,” Jackson told Kevin Clark of TheRinger.com. “I would be disappointed because I want to see the faces, see people pumped up. The crowd brings energy.”
Fans without games would be a bizarre site. But most players and fans would gladly accept a no-fan rule if it meant games could be played.
For Jackson, he's looking to bounce back from a shocking AFC Division Round playoff loss to the Titans this past season.
Fans or no fans, the Ravens quarterback should have another terrific year in Baltimore.