Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank optimistic NFL season will play all 16 regular-season games

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Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank sounded positive when asked if the NFL would move forward with a 16-game 2020 regular season despite the coronavirus pandemic.

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With the NFL organized team activities and training camp around the corner, coaches and executives have reportedly been pessimistic about the season starting on time.

"If I had to speculate now, and I use the word speculate because that's really all it is, I would say yes,” Blank said, while speaking with NBC Sports’ Peter King for his “Football Morning in America” column. “Only because it's so far away from where we are today. I could easily see camps being shorter, players being tested on a daily basis, things of that nature. No fan attendance. Things like that.

“We may have fewer preseason games, which probably wouldn't be the end of the world,” Blank added. “But I think by September, my hope is by the time the regular season starts, that we'll be able to bring people together in some form or fashion in a safe manner and play."

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Commissioner Roger Goodell told teams on Thursday that the NFL Draft would go on as scheduled from April 23-25. Earlier this month, the Los Angeles Times reported that the draft would be at a television studio location after the league pulled all of its public events from Las Vegas.

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The NBANHL  and MLS have suspended their 2019-20 seasons earlier this month, while MLB has delayed its start to the 2020 season.