COVID forces Steelers to ban fans for December games

The Pittsburgh Steelers announced Tuesday that attendance at Heinz Field for the team’s two home games in December will be limited to family and friends of players and members of the organization due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Steelers put out a statement that new restrictions on gatherings in the state of Pennsylvania have forced the team to ban fans.

“Governor Wolf’s Office and State Health Director Dr. Levine issued new orders and advisories which will affect our games in December, starting with the game against Washington on December 6. That order will now limit Heinz Field to no more than 2,500 people in the building, including players, coaches, stadium staff, etc.,” the team said in a statement.

“Consequently, we will have to restrict fans in the seating bowl to family and friends of players and the organization.”

The Steelers Thursday night Thanksgiving game against the rival Baltimore Ravens is not impacted by the new restrictions, and about 5,500 fans are expected to attend the game at Heinz Field.

Fans at Thursday’s game will be required to adhere to the stadium’s protocols, including requirements for wearing a mask and social distancing.

While no fans will be allowed at Heinz Field in December, it is unknown if fans will be allowed into the stadium should the Steelers, who are currently the No. 1 seed in the AFC, host any games in the postseason.