Cold Weather Super Bowl a ‘WIN’ for the NFL

The recent decision by NFL owners has stirred conversation all over the country. Some fans and players are all for a Super Bowl being played in a ‘cold weather’ city, while others have showed their displeasure with the announcement. Here is why playing the Super Bowl in East Rutherford is a WIN for the league.

First, we begin by sorting out every NFL team into one of two categories: cold weather & warm weather. In this case, a ‘cold weather’ team is a team located in a city that has an average February temperature of less than 50°F. This temperature is the cut-off based on the NFLs’ ‘50 degree rule’.

Of the 31 teams in the NFL, 22 are located in a cold weather city, while nine teams are warm weather cities. To be fair, six of the cold weather teams have dome or retractable room stadiums (Colts, Lions, Vikings, Falcons, Cowboys and Rams). This brings us to 16 cold weather teams and 15 warm weather teams or teams with a dome or retractable roof.

In the last 10 years, 16 of the 20 Super Bowl teams hail from cold weather cities…four of which have domes or retractable roofs. Super Bowl XXXVII was the only time in that span two teams from warm weather cities met (Raiders vs. Buccaneers). Two teams with a dome or retractable roof (Colts vs. Saints) met for the first time in a Super Bowl in the 2009-2010 season. This leaves us with 12 of the last 20 Super Bowl contenders that play in cold weather cities with open stadiums. Some will argue this is an advantage, I couldn’t agree more. However, isn’t playing in a dome or retractable roof an advantage as well? Sure, the ball is not cold, field conditions are good and it’s not freezing cold, but does looking up towards to roof take any getting used to?

I don’t understand why cold weather teams can host all through the playoffs, except for the Super Bowl. Correct me if I’m wrong, but it doesn’t get that much colder in these cities from the January Conference Championship game to the Super Bowl….does it? I was born and raised in Nebraska. The best time of the year is September/October when the temperature begins to drop, leaves begin to fall and its time to dig out the long sleeves and long John’s…..it means there is football in the air.

The recent announcement of the 2014 Super Bowl being played at the New Meadowlands Stadium is a win for cold weather teams. The teams have long fielded some of the best teams in the League, but have not had the opportunity to play for the championship at home….others have. It is a win for the cities as well. Not only do some of these cities have passionate fans, but they are home to some of the best teams. They haven’t had the chance to cash in on revenue from hosting a Super Bowl. This will change…well for at least one year. It is unclear if other cold weather teams without a dome or retractable roof will have a chance to host a Super Bowl.

Some arguments have been made that the fans cannot enjoy the Super Bowl as much if it is in a cold weather city. Have you seen New England, New York (Giants or Jets), Denver, Kansas City, Philadelphia and others play in November, December and January? Some fans show up in sub-freezing temperatures with no shirts to cheer on their teams. If fans of the Dolphins, Raiders, Chargers, Saints, etc. don’t want to attend a Super Bowl to cheer on their team because it is cold then so be it. I am willing to bet if the game is played in Denver and the Broncos have been eliminated fans in the surrounding area would still love to take in the chance to watch a Super Bowl.

Average temperature should not be a deciding factor for the Super Bowl. The NFL has made a big step by allowing the 2014 Super Bowl to be played outside….here’s hoping this is the first of many….

Oh, by the way, one more thing on the “it’s too cold” argument…

“Hi, I’m football season, have we met?”

NFL Cities with average February temperatures (warm to cold – in °F)
Miami – 68.5
Tampa – 61.5
San Diego – 58.6
Jacksonville – 55.2
#New Orleans – 54.3
#Glendale – 54.0
San Francisco – 54.0
#Houston – 53.9
Oakland – 51.0
_______________ NFL 50 degree Rule

#Dallas – 47.9
#Atlanta – 44.8
#Seattle – 44.3
Charlotte – 42.5
Tennessee – 40.4
#St. Louis – 35.0
Baltimore – 34.8
Washington D.C. – 33.6
Denver – 33.2
Philadelphia – 33.0
Foxborough – 32.0
East Rutherford – 32.0
Kansas City – 31.2
#Indianapolis – 29.6
Cincinnati – 29.4
Pittsburgh – 28.7
Cleveland – 27.2
Chicago – 25.4
#Detroit – 25.4
Buffalo – 24.5
Green Bay – 18.3
#Minnesota – 17.9

# – team has a dome or retractable roof
**Temperatures were taken from cityrating.com and weatherbase.com

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