The latest updates on COVID-19 in Colorado
- Severe restrictions: No indoor dining, 8 p.m. last call for 20 Colorado counties
- Stimulus package: Colorado's special legislative session on Nov. 30 to address coronavirus relief
- Thanksgiving travel: CDC recommends not traveling for Thanksgiving but DIA remains busy
Football fans will no longer be able to attend Denver Broncos home games in-person this season following Sunday's match against the Miami Dolphins at Empower Field at Mile High.
"Although we are confident in our strong safety protocols and have no evidence of any COVID-19 transmission traced to our home games, the increase in cases and hospitalizations locally requires us to adjust our future plans," the team announced Friday in a statement. "Taking this precaution is consistent with the recent guidelines issued by local officials to limit gatherings with the holiday season approaching."
A state variance issued in September allowed the Broncos to host a maximum of 5,700 fans per home game. So far, that's included matchups against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Kansas City Chiefs and the Los Angeles Chargers.
Earlier this week, state health officials said they would still let fans attend this weekend's game against Miami, despite Denver entering a new phase of restrictions on Friday to curb the spread of COVID-19.
"The Broncos have been wonderful partners throughout the course of this pandemic," Scott Bookman, Colorado's incident commander for the coronavirus, said. "We continue to be in conversations with the Broncos to make sure that we are doing all that we can to keep everyone safe."
Three opponents remain on the Broncos' home schedule this season: the New Orleans Saints on Nov. 29, the Buffalo Bills on Dec. 20, and the Las Vegas Raiders for the last game of the regular season on Jan. 3.
"We are grateful for the support and flexibility of our fans during such a challenging year," team officials said. "It was important to us that fans have one final opportunity to attend a game on Sunday, especially with much of their planning already underway."
Fans who bought season ticket packages that include admission to the final three home games will get a credit, or they can request a refund, according to the team. Fans with single-game tickets should contact the point-of-sale ticketing vendor, while purchases made through Ticketmaster will be refunded automatically within a week.
Earlier this month, the team announced that current general manager and former quarterback John Elway had tested positive for the coronavirus, along with team president Joe Ellis. At the time, the Broncos said the two executives immediately self-quarantined and had mild symptoms.