Ohio should be the NFL’s bubble for the 2020 season

NFL player Odell Beckham Jr. #13 of the Cleveland Browns (Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images)
NFL player Odell Beckham Jr. #13 of the Cleveland Browns (Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images) /
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NFL Logo (Photo by Chris DELMAS / AFP) (Photo by CHRIS DELMAS/AFP via Getty Images) /

The 13th Location

For the final location, there are a few different places the NFL could opt to go. To stay in Ohio, Youngstown would be the best location. About two hours and 40 minutes from Columbus, this would be the furthest destination and the one that would be the least ready to host an NFL game, most likely requiring minor updates.

Another destination could be Dayton, Ohio where the Dayton Flyers play football. A very small stadium shared with a high school, it wouldn’t be an ideal location and would require some work, but the stadium is just over an hour away from Columbus. The distance from the hub is what could make this work.

If Dayton is being considered, the NFL could look for other smaller schools, like Mount Union, that play host to bigger collegiate games that just might not be on television, but are closer to Columbus.

The final option would be to break state lines and play in a bigger stadium in a surrounding state. This could include Heinz Field in Pittsburgh or Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, both of which are about three hours from Columbus.

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Regardless of where the 13th location comes from, there are plenty of options in Ohio that would make the bubble work. This would keep everything centralized to Columbus with games being the only travel and taking place in a single day for each game. The NFL wouldn’t have to adjust the schedule and the season could go on as close to planned as possible, while also keeping a safe environment for the players.