Will Super Bowl LV have an audience? The NFL’s latest statement
We haven’t even seen the first snap of either the NFC or AFC Championship games, and yet people are already talking about Super Bowl LV, the fifty-fifth NFL title game that is set to be played on Sunday, February 7th, 2021, at Raymond James Stadium at Tampa, Florida.
This Sunday will determine who takes the field at Super Bowl LV, as the reigning NFL Champions the Kansas City Chiefs are set to square off against the Buffalo Bills this Sunday at 6:40 p.m. ET. Meanwhile, The Green Bay Packers are set to take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this Sunday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. ET.
However, one of the major questions surrounding Super Bowl LV is if there will be any fans allowed, seeing as the league was pretty inconsistent in the 2020-2021 season in terms of which cities allowed fans and which didn’t. On top of that, with The Weeknd set to perform during this year’s traditional Super Bowl halftime show, one would assume the NFL would want fans for this iconic game & much-anticipated performance, right?
Battle of the Bays
The first game of this weekend’s doubleheader will see Aaron Rodgers & the Green Bay Packers square off against Tom Brady & the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Lambeau Field. The is the classic marquee of “icon vs icon”, as many fans notably argue that Tom Brady is the greatest quarterback who has ever played the game, decorated with six Super Bowl wins & three MVP awards during his New England tenure.
Aaron Rodgers is considered by many to be the most talented football player of all time, who has simply come up short in his career thanks to the Green Bay Packer’s organization.
The Packers finished the season with a record of 13-3, including a butt whooping they took from the Bucs earlier in the season at Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers finished with a record of 11-5, but are steadily peaking at the right time.
What makes this game fun is that it’s the first time Aaron Rodgers will have ever played in an AFC title game at his own home field. Equally, if the Bucs pull off a win, it’ll be the first time a team has ever played in the Super Bowl at their home stadium.
David vs. Goliath
The Buffalo Bills are the feel-good story of the 2020-2021 season, finishing with a record of 13-3 as well as winning a division that had been occupied by the New England Patriots for the last twenty years. Young quarterback Josh Allen is playing out of his mind right now, giving his team the moral confidence they need to steal this game and take Buffalo to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1994.
However, they might be running into a buzzsaw as they’re set to take on the phenom Patrick Mahomes and his Kansas City Chiefs, the reigning Super Bowl champs. The game will be played on their turf at Arrowhead Stadium, giving the 14-2 Chiefs an excellent opportunity to win & return to the biggest stage.
Will there be an audience for Super Bowl LV?
While the city of Tampa Bay has allowed a small number of fans to attend numerous Buccaneers’ home games, it was still unclear whether or not the NFL & the city of Tampa Bay would allow fans to attend the upcoming Super Bowl LV. Now, it appears we may finally have our answer.
CNN reported that the NFL, as well as the city of Tampa Bay, will be allowing 22,000 fans to attend Super Bowl LV. Even cooler? 7,500 of those fans that will be attending are going to be vaccinated healthcare workers, giving them a huge treat as they’ve been the ones dealing with the hardest ramifications of COVID-19 this past year.
Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, Florida, does have the capacity to seat just under 66,000 fans, an attendance number that the NFL would love to meet but are instead following the recommended health & safety protocols to help stop the spread of the virus.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell had the following to say regarding the decision to let healthcare workers attend the big game:
“I am the son of a nurse and all of you have a very special place in my heart. I have seen the work that you do. My mom used to talk about it all day. It’s just extraordinary work and we owe you our ongoing gratitude.”