Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

After months of empty stadiums, the ancient practice of attending in-person sporting events is coming back — and in a hurry.

Driving the news: Sporting Kansas City became the second MLS team to play in front of fans on Tuesday, joining FC Dallas, which played its first home game in front of a reported 2,912 people two weeks ago.

And of course, the floodgates are set to open on Sept. 10, when multiple NFL teams kick off their seasons in front of limited-capacity crowds.

What they're saying: "The question everyone wants to know the answer to: Is it safe? The answer, unfortunately, isn't easy to determine," writes Neil deMause on his blog, "Field of Schemes."

  • "Will you get sick from COVID by going to an NFL game...? Probably not."
  • "But in epidemiology, what's important isn't whether you get sick but rather whether somebody gets sick."
  • "Really the question, then, is less 'Is it safe to go to an NFL game in the middle of a pandemic?' than 'Is it safe for a nation in the middle of a pandemic to allow people to go to NFL games?'
  • "The only way to know for sure is to do a huge experiment, with human subjects — and for better or for worse, that's what we're about to get."

Go deeper

Updated 20 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Expand chart
Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

The number of deaths from COVID-19 surpassed 980,000 worldwide on Thursday.

By the numbers: Globally, more than 32 million million people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, Johns Hopkins data shows.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
13 hours ago - Health

Where bringing students back to school is most risky

Data: Coders Against COVID; Note: Rhode Island and Puerto Rico did not meet minimum testing thresholds for analysis. Values may not add to 100% due to rounding; Cartogram: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Schools in Southern and Midwestern states are most at risk of coronavirus transmission, according to an analysis by Coders Against COVID that uses risk indicators developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The big picture: Thankfully, schools have not yet become coronavirus hotspots, the Washington Post reported this week, and rates of infection are lower than in the surrounding communities. But that doesn't mean schools are in the clear, especially heading into winter.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus

Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) and his wife, Pamela, both tested positive for coronavirus, his office announced on Friday.

The state of play: The Northams were tested after one of their staff "who works closely within the couple's living quarters" tested positive. The governor is asymptomatic, while his wife is "experiencing mild symptoms." They plan to isolate at home for 10 days.

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