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NFLPA says revenues would decline by $3 billion if stadiums are empty

Mike Florio and Chris Simms wonder how the NFL will be able to enforce the COVID-19 restrictions to help keep all the teams and players safe during the season.

The NFL would see a dramatic loss of revenue -- and with it a dramatic decline in players’ portion of the revenue -- if stadiums are empty this season.

That’s the word from the NFL Players Association, which hosted a call today to discuss the implications of the coronavirus pandemic. On that call, the NFLPA said the revenue loss from games in empty stadiums would likely be in the neighborhood of $3 billion.

That’s not quite as bad as a previous report that pegged the revenue decline from empty stadiums at $5.5 billion, but it’s still a major decline. And given that the salary cap is determined through a calculation of league revenues, a substantial decline for the owners would also become a substantial decline for the players.

Which means both sides will be motivated to find a way to make the season work, with fans in the stands. Empty stadiums would cost everyone a lot.