The Saints will host a playoff game, but they won’t have the same home-field advantage they’ve enjoyed in their past 12 Superdome postseason contests. They considered a plan that could have allowed for more fans in the building.
“I brought up the idea of testing 50,000 people and quarantining them in a hotel and having the most safest Superdome known to man, scientifically,” coach Sean Payton told reporters on Wednesday, via Luke Johnson of the New Orleans Times-Picayune. “Bus them, they’ve tested every day, and you’ve got a COVID-free facility.”
This wasn’t a joke. The Saints did indeed brainstorm possibilities for getting people into the Superdome in a way that local officials would approve.
The Saints previously had toyed with the idea of playing home games at LSU, in order to get more fans into the building. Payton apparently didn’t mention whether the Baton Rouge option was considered.
The Saints are expected to have roughly 3,000 fans present for the game. It’s better than none, but it’s not nearly as good as a full house would be against the Bears.