Which NFL Teams Are Allowing Fans in Stadiums This Season?

The upcoming NFL season will be distinctly different to any of its predecessors due to the lack of fans in attendance.

Social distancing measures imposed to curb the novel coronavirus pandemic mean most of the league's 32 franchises will play behind closed doors for the foreseeable future, while some—like the Las Vegas Raiders and the Washington Football Team—have ruled out welcoming fans at all until next season. Other venues will operate at a reduced capacity at least for the time being.

Here's where all 32 teams currently stand ahead of Week 1 of the 2020 season.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

Last month, the Bills announced their first two home games of the season—against the New York Jets on September 13 and the Los Angeles Rams two weeks later—will be played behind closed doors.

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins are a notable exception this season as a limited number of fans will be allowed inside Hard Rock Stadium. The venue, which hosted Super Bowl LIV back in February, will host a maximum of 13,000 fans—20 percent of capacity—for the Dolphins' season opener against the Buffalo Bills on September 20.

Spectators will be placed in socially-distanced seating and will be asked to wear masks.

New England Patriots

The Patriots won't allow fans inside Gillette Stadium at least until the end of September, meaning their games against the Miami Dolphins on September 13 and the Las Vegas Raiders two weeks later will both be played behind closed doors.

Team officials have told ESPN they are hopeful the situation may change later in the season.

New York Jets

MetLife Stadium will be empty for the foreseeable future after New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced in July that no outdoor gatherings would be allowed due to "continued concerns for the health and safety of fans."

New England Patriots, Gillette Stadium
A general view of Gillette Stadium before the game between the New England Patriots and the Cleveland Browns at Gillette Stadium on October 27, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Omar Rawlings/Getty

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

In July, the Ravens put forward plans to host 14,000 fans at the 71,008-capacity M&T Bank Stadium, with a new proposal to allow 7,500 fans submitted last month. Neither has come to pass and the Ravens will play behind closed doors for "at least the initial part" of the season.

Cincinnati Bengals

Last month the State of Ohio turned down a request for an exemption waiver from the Bengals to allow fans at games, meaning Paul Brown Stadium will remain empty at least for the first few weeks of the season.

Cleveland Browns

The Browns are hopeful they can operate FirstEnergy Stadium at 20 percent capacity for their home opener against the Cincinnati Bengals on September 17. The proposal include socially-distanced seats and plans to sell tickets in what the franchise described as "pods of known fans"—groups of up to 10 people who are closely familiar with each other and who would be allowed to sit together.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Late last month, the Steelers confirmed their first two games at Heinz Field—against the Denver Broncos on September 20 and against the Houston Texans a week later—will be played behind closed doors.

AFC South

Houston Texans

Fans will not be allowed inside NRG Stadium for the Texans' home opener on September 20 and it remains to be seen whether the policy will be changed by the time the Texans host the Minnesota Vikings on October 5.

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts will allow a maximum of 2,500 fans at the 67,000-capacity Lucas Oil Stadium for their home opener against the Minnesota Vikings on September 20. The organization has announced it will continue to evaluate the situation to determine capacity for future home games.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars expect to be able to welcome up to 16,791 fans—25 percent of TIAA Bank Field's 67,164-capacity.

Tennessee Titans

The Titans will play their home opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars on September 20 behind closed doors, Nashville mayor John Cooper announced last month. It remains to be seen whether guidance will change for the Titans' next home game, which is scheduled for October 4 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

AFC West

Denver Broncos

The Broncos' season opener on Monday Night Football against the Tennesee Titans this coming Monday will be played without fans. Upon announcing the decision last month, the organization explained that playing behind closed doors was "the responsible thing to do right now."

Kansas City Chiefs

The defending Super Bowl champions will allow approximately 16,000 fans to attend the season opener against the Houston Texans on Thursday night. The figure represents 22 percent of Arrowhead Stadium's near 73,000-capacity and is unlikely to be increased for the first few weeks of the season.

Las Vegas Raiders

The Raiders' debut season in Vegas will be played behind closed doors after team owner Mark Davis announced last month that he didn't want to host a limited amount of fans. "I'd rather have everybody p***** at me than just one person," he said. "I've got to make it up to them, and I will. This is all about safety and equity."

Los Angeles Chargers

Like the Raiders, the Chargers move into a new stadium this season and they will play behind closed doors. Last month, the team announced SoFi Stadium won't welcome fans until further notice.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys will allow fans inside AT&T Stadium, but the exact figure is yet to be determined. Texas is currently limiting venues to a maximum 50 percent capacity, which would allow the Cowboys to welcome 40,000 fans. "Our fans will be in the stadium because they have chosen to be there," Dallas owner Jerry Jones told The Athletic last month. "I'm confident that we've got a very educated situation, and that our fans can come and have a safe experience at our stadium."

New York Giants

As is the case for the New York Jets, the Giants won't welcome fans for the foreseeable future after New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced in July that no outdoor gatherings would be allowed due to "continued concerns for the health and safety of fans".

Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles will play behind closed doors until further notice as the city of Philadelphia currently prohibits outdoor events involving more than 50 people. ESPN reported that the mayor's office described the arrangement as a "fluid situation," which could be amended should the situation improve.

Washington Football Team

Like the Raiders, Washington has also announced it will play all its home games this season behind closed doors.

MetLife Stadium, New York Giants
A video display board welcomes Joe Judge as the new head coach of the New York Giants during a news conference at MetLife Stadium on January 9 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Rich Schultz/Getty

NFC North

Chicago Bears

The Bears will begin the season behind closed doors, but the franchise has indicated it hopes to welcome fans back at Soldier Field as soon as it is safe to do so. "The team and City will continue to monitor the environment and believe there can be a sound plan in place to bring fans to Soldier Field once it is deemed safe and appropriate," it said in a statement.

Detroit Lions

The Lions will play their first two home games of the season—against the Chicago Bears on September 13 and against the New Orleans Saints on October 4—behind closed doors, but have indicated they are going to reassess the situation as the season progresses.

Green Bay Packers

Lambeau Field will be empty at least until November 1, when the Packers take on the Minnesota Vikings in their third home game of the season. "We are hopeful that we will be able to host fans for games later in the season, should conditions allow," Packers president Mark Murphy said last month. Should Green Bay allow fans to attend, the number will be capped to between 10,000 and 12,000 of Lambeau Field's 80,000-seat capacity.

Minnesota Vikings

The Minnesota Department of Health guidelines currently ban indoor venues from hosting over 250 fans, which means the Vikings will play their first two home games this season—against the Green Bay Packers on September 13 and against the Tennessee Titans two weeks later—behind closed doors.

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

Having originally planned to allow between 10,000 to 20,000 fans to attend games this season, the Falcons last month announced they will be played behind closed doors through September.

Carolina Panthers

Last week the Panthers announced their season opener against the Las Vegas Raiders this coming Sunday will be played behind closed doors, but the franchise is mildly optimistic it could host a limited number of fans later this season. "This is not a choice between a full stadium and an empty stadium," the Panthers said in a statement. "We have offered compromises and alternatives."

New Orleans Saints

Last month the Saints announced their season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 13 will be played without fans, but a limited amount of season ticket holders will be able to attend games at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome beginning with the team's matchup against the Green Bay Packers on September 27.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tom Brady's home debut in Tampa Bay on September 20 will go ahead without fans as will the Bucs' second home game of the season on October 4. The franchise has indicated that "should current trends continue to improve" it plans to welcome fans back against the Green Bay Packers on October 18.

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

Last month the Cardinals announced their first two games of the season—against Washington on September 20 and the Lions a week later—will be played behind closed doors.

Los Angeles Rams

Last month, in a joint-statement with the Los Angeles Chargers, the Rams announced their new state-of-the-art SoFi Stadium won't welcome fans until further notice.

San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers will play in front of empty stands for their season opener against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, but a decision for the rest of the season is yet to be made.

Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks' first three home games of the season—against the New England Patriots on September 20, against the Dallas Cowboys a week later and against the Minnesota Vikings on October 11—will all be held behind closed doors.