A new era of Super Bowl play is on the verge of being secured. Actually, I guess you could say an old tradition is on the verge of returning to the NFL. With each passing day, it seems more and more certain that America’s most prominent sporting event is once again headed for potentially harsh conditions. This Tuesday at the NFL league meetings in Dallas, owners will vote “yay” or “nay” to decide whether or not New Meadowlands Stadium — the brand new, state-of-the-art home of the New York Jets and New York Giants — should host the Super Bowl in 2014. One owner who has been particularly outspoken in favor of a New York bid in 2014 is Patriots owner Robert Kraft:
Doing it in New York is the right thing for a lot of reasons,” Kraft told the Daily News last week. “I’ve been going to Patriots games for 50 years up here. I personally believe all football should be played outdoors. Our league was founded on winter football with the Ice Bowl. Our sport is about resilience, mental toughness, adjustments. I think it will be a great experience for the fans. A memorable experience.”
Although he insists it has not affected his stance, Kraft is undoubtedly considering his own team’s interests. If New York hosts a Super Bowl in its outdoor stadium, that would eliminate a major obstacle when it comes time for the Patriots owner to lobby for a Super Bowl to be played at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro. If, and when, New York breaks the cold weather barrier, harsh conditions can no longer be used as an effective argument against holding the big game in a stadium with the potential for snow and freezing temperatures.
According to the NY Daily News, a league source believes there are no owners completely opposed to a New York Super Bowl, which leads him to believe it won’t be difficult to convince those on the fence that it’s a good idea. Why would it be? A Super Bowl in the most media-ridden city in the United States would bring record-setting exposure and revenue to the NFL and the city of New York. The only thing that could stop owners from endorsing the bid is the potential for harsh weather conditions.
Personally, I don’t think that’s enough of a reason to prevent this from happening. Yes, playing in a dome or in warm weather allows players to get a little more comfortable and assures that weather conditions have a minimal role in deciding an NFL champion. But these men are professionals who are getting paid millions of dollars. Teams and cities that decided against building a covered stadium should not have to miss out on the revenue that warm weather and covered-stadium teams enjoy if the only reason is that grown men don’t want to play in the cold. Take it from one who knows and has been to one of the coldest football games ever — the 2004 AFC Divisional Playoff game between the Titans and Patriots where temperatures dipped to 4 degrees with a wind chill of -10. Fans don’t care. As a matter of fact, most of them love it. The players can man up, too.
Big Apple should get ready to host NFL’s big game in 2014 as Giants-Jets bid is lookin’ Super [NY Daily News]