Now that the NFL has awarded a Super Bowl to New York/New Jersey and said that an outdoor Super Bowl in a cold climate is feasible, other cold-weather NFL cities without domes are asking, When’s our turn?
The latest to ask is Denver, where Mayor Michael Hancock says the city has already told the NFL it wants to be considered as the Super Bowl host in 2018, 2019 or 2020.
“I think Denver would be head and shoulders above any other city to compete to host a Super Bowl,” Hancock told the Denver Post.
Denver described its efforts as “very preliminary,” but the city is serious about it. City officials also said they’re crossing their fingers that everything goes off without a hitch on game day when the Super Bowl is at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, and that the NFL decides a cold-weather Super Bowl can work. Denver has higher average high temperatures in late January and early February than Indianapolis, which just served as a very successful host city, so there’s no reason to think Denver is too cold for Super Bowl week festivities. But Indianapolis has a dome while Denver has an outdoor stadium, so game day is another question.
If it works in New Jersey, however, that could fundamentally change the way we think about which cities can host Super Bowls. All of the other cold-weather cities — particularly cities that have spent public money building outdoor NFL stadiums — are going to start wondering why they can’t get a Super Bowl, too.