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MetLife Stadium welcoming fans back at full capacity

New York Jets Fans MetLife Stadium
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The New York Jets’ home opener is scheduled for September 19 against New England. Fans will be there in full force.

The New York Jets and 82,500 of their best friends will be ready to do battle on September 19.

With the state of New Jersey loosening restrictions put in place by the COVID-19 pandemic, MetLife Stadium will be open to full capacity for the 2021 NFL season. Governor Phil Murphy signed an order lifting social distancing and mask mandates for vaccinated individuals, with the loosening taking effect on Friday. Outdoor events, including Jets and New York Giants games, can open to full capacity on that same day.

Jets co-owner Woody Johnson commemorated the announcement on his Twitter account, posting a photo of a packed MetLife Stadium next to an image bearing the figure “100%”.

“We are thrilled by Governor Murphy’s announcement today to have MetLife Stadium operate at full capacity for the 2021 season,” the Jets and Giants said in a joint statement. “We can’t wait to welcome our fans back, creating the gameday atmosphere we have all been missing. We will continue to work to ensure the return of fans is accomplished in a safe and responsible way.”

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Another post, this from the stadium directly, stated that “gameday fan protocols will be communicated prior to the 2021 NFL season”. Murphy’s new orders say that businesses can still require masks and distancing but they are no longer obligated to do so.

Neither the Jets nor Giants hosted fans at any point last season, as they were two of 13 teams that worked with empty stands during their eight regular season home games. The Jets will open their 2021 East Rutherford slate against the New England Patriots on September 19, one week after the Giants welcome the Denver Broncos.

Each team is also on track to stage preseason contests at the stadium, including their annual summer exhibition matchup, on dates to be determined. MetLife’s last sporting event with fans in the stands was an XFL matchup between the New York Guardians and Los Angeles Wildcats in February 2020.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

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