Officials from the Pro Football Hall of Fame are expected to announce the postponement of the Aug. 6 Hall of Fame game until 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a person with knowledge of the event's planning told CNBC.
The contest was set to feature the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers in the opening preseason game for the 2020-21 season. Hall of Fame officials will also postpone the Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony until next year.
The NFL will have a conference call on Thursday to discuss planning around the opening of training camps next month, as the league continues to monitor the pandemic. It is also in discussions with the National Football Players Association and health specialists.
The nation's top disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said last week that the NFL's season was in danger due to concerns of a second wave of the coronavirus this fall.
"If there is a second wave, which is certainly a possibility and which would be complicated by the predictable flu season, football may not happen this year," Fauci said in a CNN interview.
Around the country, coronavirus cases continue to spike with states in reopening phases. Florida and California, two of the largest economies in the U.S., have recently reported a record number of new cases. The spike in cases in Florida could be a concern for the National Basketball Association, which plans to restart its season in Orlando next month.
Team owners are expected to discuss modifications to stadiums to combat the spread of Covid-19. According to Sports Business Journal, the NFL is considering covering the first six-to-eight rows around stadiums with a special tarp. The tarp space could be used for advertising, meaning the NFL would replace the ticket revenue lost from filling those seats with fans.