The NFL has almost made it to the finish line.
The National Football League got through the 2020-2021 season with only a handful of COVID-19 related problems including the Baltimore Ravens schedule being juggled because of an outbreak. Denver also did not have its three rostered quarterbacks available for a game because of COVID-19 protocol. Cleveland coach Kevin Stefanski was sidelined because of COVID-19 for a playoff game. But the league got lucky and played an entire schedule. The NFL also got lucky as well as not one player or coach or staff member was terribly sick with the illness. It is now onto Tampa and Super Bowl 55. It is not the normal Super Bowl as the NFL has sold less than 15,000 seats to the game and has given away 7,500 seats to vaccinated health care workers.
The Super Bowl trappings will be somewhat muted this year but there will be a halftime show, and the commercials will be rated but one old and longtime marketing partner, a St. Louis brewery, will not be there with its Clydesdales starring in a spot. The brewery is spending that money elsewhere. Money, as always, is at the forefront of any National Football League conversation and this year it is a bit different. NFL owners and the Green Bay Packers Board of Directors make money annually except in a rare case. But COVID-19 put a damper on the money-making machine because NFL teams either could not sell customers any tickets because of health restrictions or could only open their stadiums up to a limited number of consumers. But there is a vaccine coming to NFL players. John Mara, one of the New York Giants owners is hopeful COVID-19 woes will be gone by the start of the 2021 season. He acknowledged financially 2020 wasn’t good but with vaccines available, he is hoping 2021 will be different.
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