Titans Announce No Fans Will Attend Home Opener vs. Jaguars Due to COVID-19

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 18, 2020

Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel watches from the sideline in the second half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/James Kenney)
James Kenney/Associated Press

The Tennessee Titans announced they will close off Nissan Stadium to fans for their home opener Sept. 20 against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Nashville Mayor John Cooper issued a statement about the decision:

"Across the United States, there's a wide range of approaches to in-person attendance for professional sports based on a wide range of public health policies and the prevalence of the coronavirus in those locations. We must take a cautious approach recognizing that we cannot predict our COVID-19 metrics further into the fall sports season. I'm grateful both to the Tennessee Titans and Nashville SC for working closely with our Office of the Metro Public Health Department while prioritizing the safety of their players, staff and our residents."

The Titans said they've put together a plan for when they will welcome fans back to the venue. Face coverings would be mandatory, and social distancing would be factored into the seating plan.

Based on Tuesday's announcement, the earliest the franchise might have a live attendance is Oct. 4 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The NFL has allowed each team to exercise discretion when it comes to setting any capacity limits for home games. As a result, there are a variety of approaches to the situation across the league.

On the same day the Kansas City Chiefs said they'll fill Arrowhead Stadium to around 22 percent of its usual capacity, the Chicago Bears indicated they're indefinitely prohibiting fans from attending games.

The Titans are sharing Nissan Stadium with Nashville SC until the MLS club's soccer-specific stadium is constructed in 2022. Nashville SC home games will be without fans for the month of September at a minimum.