Will Problems in NFL Scheduling Affect NASCAR As it Tries to Avoid a Daytona 500-Super Bowl Clash?

Published 12/03/2020, 7:00 AM EST
Aug 29, 2020; Daytona Beach, Florida, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Kurt Busch (1) and NASCAR Cup Series driver Martin Truex Jr. (19) lead the field to the green flag to start the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports


Admittedly, NASCAR is in a bit of a fix for the 2021 season. This is because the Daytona 500 is kicking off on February 14. This alone isn’t a very big problem. However, the trouble begins as the 2021 NFL Super Bowl is set to kick off on February 7.

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Unfortunately, this throws up quite a few problems for television broadcasters. What further complicates matters is the fact that both events take place in Florida itself. Without a doubt, both events are two of the biggest ones in the United States.

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Odds of the Daytona 500 not being conflicted by the Super Bowl are still very good, but they just got a tiny bit worse…

Posted by NASCAR First Alert on Monday, November 30, 2020

In light of this, NASCAR President Steve Phelps said“Right now we’re running on February 14th. That’s as much information as we have. Will we potentially scenario plan for a change? Perhaps. But I don’t foresee that. It’s just hard to say.”

The NASCAR and NFL dates could still change in the future

Obviously, the COVID-19 situation has thrown up a number of spanners in the works. In terms of prime-time viewership, the Super Bowl is arguably more popular than the Daytona 500.

Phelps acknowledged that the NFL is simply trying to run its season as best as it can in the midst of the pandemic. He even applauded the American football series for doing a stellar job of successfully staging most of their games. In spite of this, he does not want to speculate on the prospect of a potential clash.

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DAYTONA BEACH, FL – JULY 06: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Stars and Stripes Chevrolet, takes the checkered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)

For the moment, it seems like there is a week’s buffer between the 2 major sporting events. However, there are still 2 full months before anything concrete can be confirmed. What further complicates matters is the MLB season and the fact that multiple baseball games had to be postponed due to the pandemic.

Everything still depends on the COVID-19 crisis and how the state of Florida handles it. For a long time, Florida was one of the worst-affected states but is trying to bring it back under control.

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Whether that will affect the Super Bowl or the Daytona 500 is anyone’s guess at this point in time.

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Dhruv George

11661 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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