Pittsburgh Steelers refused permission to host followers on the playoff opener

PITTSBURGH – Despite hopes they can work out plans for the playoffs, the Pittsburgh Steelers will not receive fans on Sunday.

While the Steelers battle the Cleveland Browns to open their preseason, Heinz Field will be empty. Last week, the AllSteelers team announced that they are working with public health officials in hopes of finalizing plans to welcome fans for the first round of the postseason.

Team spokesman Burt Lauten released a statement Thursday apologizing that the Steelers will not have anyone in attendance.

“We are disappointed that we cannot take on our subscribers and other fans on Sunday evening at Heinz Field against the Cleveland Browns in our AFC Wild Card Game,” said Lauten. “We were hoping to get approval to have fans for the playoffs with a similar capacity to our games in October and November, but unfortunately government orders only allow 2,500 people in the building, including players, coaches and staff.”

The Steelers had 5,500 fans during their October and November games. You will greet selected family members and friends on Sunday.

Pittsburgh will host the Browns on Sunday night at 8:15 p.m. ET.

Noah Strackbein is a publisher at AllSteelers. Follow Noah on Twitter @NoahStrack and AllSteelers @si_steelers.

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