Philadelphia City Officials ‘Suggest’ No Fans at Eagles Games

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Philadelphia will extend their policy on restricting all large gatherings through February 2021, according to KYW Newsradio. How will this affect the upcoming Eagles season?

The novel coronavirus pandemic continues to put life on hold, including professional sports. The report claimed that the city’s annual Thanksgiving Day parade and Mummer’s Parade would be canceled this year. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that an official announcement would be delivered on Tuesday at a 1 p.m. press conference.

UPDATE: New Jersey Advance Media has reported that the Eagles can play this season but with no fans in attendance. This is an opinion expressed by Health Commissioner Thomas Farley and seconded by Philadelphia Managing Director Brian Abernathy. Neither the Eagles nor the NFL has ruled out fans at this point. It’s important to note that Abernathy has resigned from his post following backlash over the tear gas incident during the recent protests.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the city has informed the Eagles of their decision. The NFL has previously stated they would respect the recommendation of government officials. The Eagles did announce the cancellation of their rescheduled Autism Challenge fundraiser. Stay tuned.

It would seem impossible to host eight regular-season games at Lincoln Financial Field, a stadium that can hold 69,176 screaming fans. Maybe not. KYW’s Pat Loeb added this nugget that would seem to exclude sporting events and concerts from the extended restrictions: “This will not apply to private outdoor events with fewer than 50 guests, such as weddings and family picnics; to recreational sports with fewer than 25 participants; or events on private property, including performance venues and stadiums.”

The Eagles may still face an uphill climb on welcoming fans to the Linc in 2020, though. Philadelphia still hasn’t opened bars or restaurants as the city remains stuck in the “green phase.” The Philadelphia Department of Public Health announced 234 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 novel coronavirus in Philadelphia since July 10.

According to a press release, the total number of confirmed cases in Philly stands at 27,575. However, the total number of deaths continues to plummet with the city only reporting two fatalities last week and 835 (51%) of the 1,631 total deaths were recorded at nursing homes.

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Eagles Allowing Season-Ticket Holders to Opt-Out

Meanwhile, the Eagles have taken a pro-active approach on how to handle fans who harbor fear about going to games in 2020. The organization sent an email to season-ticket holders last week informing them they could opt-out or “pause their account” for this season without penalty. Those fans choosing that option would have the same seat locations in 2021. The deadline to decide is July 15.

“We understand that, even with safety measures in place, you may have concerns about attending games in person. As such, we would like to offer you the option to defer your Season Tickets for the 2020 season,” the Eagles wrote in an email. “If you choose this option, we will pause your account for 2020 and resume your account in 2021 with the same seat locations you would have had in 2020. If applicable, your SBL and any other ticket or club seat license agreement will remain in effect and you will resume season ticket purchases in 2021.”

The Eagles had previously offered their fans the chance to simply defer their payments and roll it over into 2021. That announcement fueled rumors that there would be no fans in the stands this year. To date, no Eagles players have tested positive but the city halted a full reopening until at least August.

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