It’s going to be a very different football season for fans this fall on the high school, college and pro levels, especially for those enthusiastic spectators at Lambeau Field in Green Bay.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact communities around the country and throughout Wisconsin, the Green Bay Packers announced last week that Lambeau Field will not host fans at the first two home games this season against Detroit Sept. 20 and Atlanta Oct. 5, a Monday night game.

The Packers’ third home game is on Nov. 1 against the Minnesota Vikings. Whether fans can attend this game and others later in the season will depend on the status of the virus. The Packers will continue to evaluate a variety of factors in consultation with local medical and public health officials.

As preseason games are not being played this year, conducting the first two regular-season games with only the essential participants will allow the organization to place its full focus on the game itself. This will also allow the organization to implement all the protocols that are in place due to the pandemic.

“Lambeau Field will not be the same without our fans’ energetic support in the stands,” said Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy. “Given the extraordinary circumstances this year and the additional protocols in place, though, we determined it was best to take incremental steps to start the regular season. These two games will allow us to focus our attention on safely conducting games inside the stadium with all necessary participants,” said Murphy.

In conjunction with the games taking place without fans, all other public areas at Lambeau Field will be closed during home games, including parking lots and the Lambeau Field Atrium’s popular attractions — Packers Pro Shop, Packers Hall of Fame and 1919 Kitchen and Tap. Titletown is expected to remain open to the public. However, no team-run game-day activities will be planned. Other Titletown businesses may host activities on game days.

If the team can transition to hosting fans for games later in the season, season ticket holders who have opted in for the opportunity to purchase tickets this season will receive instructions about the ticket-purchasing process at a later date.

Previously, the Packers announced that if fans are allowed to attend games, the stadium would only be able to accommodate a significantly reduced capacity. Fans attending games will be required to wear face masks, use only mobile tickets, and are encouraged to wash their hands often. 

All NFL-required protocols are subject to change and may be updated on a game-by-game basis as conditions dictate, including the number of tickets available for each game. The Packers are planning to make necessary adjustments in order to conduct games in as safe a manner as possible. 

But for those Packers’ fans who enjoy attending the games at Lambeau, they might end up cheering on the Green and Gold from their rec room couch for most of the season and there will be no screaming spectators in the stands.