Two weeks ago we endured the annual ritual we’ve come to know as the NFL Draft. Over the years, it’s gone from a relatively low-key affair to a full blown three-day football extravaganza. This year, for obvious reasons, was different. Living rooms around the country replaced the media circus and fan frenzy that typically descend upon the host city (it was supposed to be held in Las Vegas this year). As a result, the ratings for Round 1 of this year’s draft were record breaking. It must be nice to have a captive audience. The selection of “Mr. Irrelevant” officially concluded the draft, and everyone’s attention turned to the next important date on the NFL Calendar.
Timing Is Everything
The NFL had timing working for it when it came to the coronavirus. Most sporting events have been canceled or postponed indefinitely as a result of the virus sweeping the globe. Leagues like the NBA and NHL were heading into the home stretches of their seasons. Others, like MLS, had just gotten underway.
The NFL, on the other hand, was done and dusted by the time the USA started shutting down. The offseason was in full swing, and as a result, the impact wasn’t as immediate or devastating for the league. It also afforded them an opportunity to develop contingency plans for events such as the draft. Further – their season isn’t scheduled to get underway until training camps start to open in mid-July. The Hall of Fame Game is scheduled for August 6th, followed by pre-season activities/games and the regular season opener, which falls on September 10th this year. That brings us to last night’s “unveiling”.
Game On – Hopefully
The NFL is a league that very much lives by the “go big or go home” mentality. Much like the draft weekend, the announcing of the league schedule isn’t just done through a press release. Instead, we were given a three hour, full blown breakdown, and analysis of all 256 games that will lead to Super Bowl LV next February. Viewers had their pick of how to digest their team’s upcoming season schedule. You could watch on the NFL Network, through the NFL app, or on NFL.com.
Ultimately, only time will tell if the season ends up being played. One of the biggest questions surrounds the logistics of each game. Will the stadiums be empty? Will there be additional regular health precautions implemented? There are A LOT of variables given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and how the USA has, is, and will be dealing with it come September. Once again, though, the NFL has some wiggle room thanks to the timing on the calendar.
The ultimate question will be: what things will look like between now and the scheduled kickoff in the fall? For now, though, we’ll at least get to enjoy this latest bit of sporting news. It will allow for endless hours of conversation and debate among fans. What does your team’s schedule look like? Which matchups are the most intriguing? Worrisome? Must-win? Will your team reach the promised land come February of 2021? Check back in here at The Turf for additional coverage of the upcoming NFL season. Let the games begin!
- / 1 year ago
To me, Rachel Nichols is the personification of posting a black square on Instagram.