As the COVID-19 health pandemic continues, many new ripple effects may begin to take place; particularly as people leave the quarantine life and ease back into their day-to-day activities. One interesting consequence (that we actually find rather positive) concerns the National Football League and the implementation of a potential new rule that would ban alcohol from their stadiums.
To be clear, this would only be in effect for the remainder of 2020. But rumors are circulating that, for health reasons, officials may remove all alcohol from live games.
NBC Sports insider Peter King shared the insight on his Football Morning in America column, which highlighted many potential changes in store for the league. The alcohol rule, in particular, ties directly back to COVID-19 and the health risks that long beer lines could cause.
King mentioned how people frequently leave their seats to buy booze at games, then get up and down again for bathroom breaks. This could heavily impact social distancing and create more opportunities for fans to contract a strain of the virus. He also called out age restrictions for live events.
“I could see the NFL, if and when fans are allowed to come to games, advising anyone over 70 to not come,” King explained when hammering in his points. “I could see alcohol being banned at games for the year. Meaning, theoretically, fewer trips to crowded rest rooms through crowded concourses by patrons.”
Several high profile teams are already sharing their own ideas for how games could be run following the end of quarantines. The Miami Dolphins, for example, want to limit game attendance sizes to 15,000 (versus the 60,000 they’re used to getting at their stadium) and discussed ordering food to your seats via online apps.
We believe this trend will most certainly continue across other types of venues as the “new normal” continues to set in. Concerts, for example, will probably also follow a similar protocol; as will other major sporting events.
If that’s the case, it could certainly be a small victory for limiting alcohol abuse (and particularly binge drinking) for the next couple of months. Sports are often synonymous with drinking and there are certainly heightened risks for DUI accidents after games and events.
So while this would most likely be a shorter term solution due to COVID-19 risks, our hope is that it could lead to a larger trend that may limit alcoholic temptations at venues such as these.