Packers not to go for (pack) ed house



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Lambeau Field with incremental strategy Image: Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers – the National Football League (NFL) American football franchise – has announced its residence Lambeau Field will not host fans for the first two home games of the 2020 regular season, with a view to changing this approach from that point onwards as part of an “incremental” strategy.

Lambeau Field is an outdoor athletic stadium in the north central United States, located in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The home field of the Green Bay Packers of the NFL, it opened in 1957 as City Stadium, replacing the original City Stadium at Green Bay East High School as the Packers’ home field.

The National Football League is a professional American football league consisting of 32 teams, divided equally between the National Football Conference and the American Football Conference.

The Packers are due to welcome the Detroit Lions on September 20th and Atlanta Falcons on October 1st, with their third home game set to be against the Minnesota Vikings on November 1st. Whether fans can attend this game and others later in the season will depend on the coronavirus scenario which is in a pretty bad shape in the United States. The team informed that it will continue to evaluate a variety of factors in consultation with local medical and public health officials.

As preseason games are not being played this year, the Packers said conducting the first two regular-season games with only the essential participants at the Lambeau Field – which can accommodate 81,441 fans – will allow the organization to focus on the game itself. This will also enable the organization, the only publicly-owned team in the NFL, to implement all the protocols that are in place due to COVID-19.

Lamented Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy, “Lambeau Field will not be the same without our fans’ energetic support in the stands. Given the extraordinary circumstances this year and the additional protocols in place, though, we determined it was best to take incremental steps to start the regular season. These two games will allow us to focus our attention on safely conducting games inside the stadium with all necessary participants.”

“We are hopeful that we will be able to host fans for games later in the season, should conditions allow. We will continue to consult with community healthcare and public health officials on the pandemic conditions in our area. We ask our fans to continue to help by wearing masks and maintaining social distancing guidelines,” Murphy added.

In sync with the games taking place without fans, all other public areas at Lambeau Field will be closed during home games, including parking lots and the Lambeau Field Atrium’s attractions. Titletown is expected to remain open to the public, but no team-run game day activities will be planned.

The Packers have informed that if the scenario arises when they can allow fans for their games later in the season, season ticket holders who have opted in for the opportunity to purchase tickets this season will receive instructions about the ticket-purchasing process at a later date.

Earlier, the Packers had announced that if fans are allowed to attend games, the stadium would only be able to fit in a significantly reduced capacity. It is compulsory for fans attending games to wear face covers, use only mobile tickets, and are encouraged to wash their hands often. In addition, all concession and Pro Shop purchases will be in the cashless mode.

NFL teams have adopted different approach to the issue of allowing fans in the stadia fold. Recently, it was announced that the plush Allegiant Stadium which can fit in 65,000 spectators will not allow Las Vegas Raiders fans the 2020 season as COVID-19 continues its ‘killing spree’ in the US.

The Atlanta Falcons have maintained there will be a limited capacity of fans between 10,000 and 20,000 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta for home games. The Los Angeles Rams have also stated that their brand new SoFi Stadium will boast limited or no capacity in 2020, while season tickets are a total ‘no no’ for its debut campaign.

The New York Giants and New York Jets announced their games at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey will be a closed-door affair until further notice to follow COVID-19 regulations in the State of New Jersey. The New England Patriots stated they expect to run Gillette Stadium in Massachusetts at 20 percent capacity.

The Baltimore Ravens became the first team in the league to specify its intended attendance cap if fans are allowed at games during the 2020 season, with the Jacksonville Jaguars following their footsteps. The Philadelphia Eagles have been informed by City leaders that they shouldn’t expect to have fans at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia this season.

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