NFL will consider Dolphins' request to avoid afternoon heat

We’ve previously noted that when the Miami Dolphins changed their ticket prices this year, one of the changes was charging about $5 more per ticket for seats in the shade than for seats in the sun.

But the Dolphins’ preference is simply to avoid having any early-afternoon games in the sweltering heat.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports that the NFL said it will consider Dolphins owner Stephen Ross’s request to have few, if any, 1 p.m. hot-weather home games. But a league source also told Jackson that “it’s impossible to fulfill the wish list of every team.”

Scheduling games in September in Miami can be tough both because of heat and because of the threat of hurricanes, and the league might be tempted to skew the Dolphins’ schedule so that they play mostly on the road for the first several weeks of the schedule and then get to play at home for most of the late part of the year.

But the Patriots, Jets and Bills likely wouldn’t favor that idea, and ultimately, there’s just not much that can be done about the fact that the weather plays a part in outdoor football.

And if the Dolphins are so concerned about the heat, they could always build a dome.

54 responses to “NFL will consider Dolphins' request to avoid afternoon heat

  1. There goes one of our homefield advantages. The team trains in the off season in this heat and should be better conditioned than our northern counterparts…

  2. The Fins have gotten soft. That heat WAS the 12th man. When they were successful, they were winning all those Sept/OCT home games due to the heat. Most teams were not prepared for it. It seems that all these new players need to be coddled.

  3. Please, hot in miami? Humid as hell yes, but try sitting in ASU stadium in Tempe in the direct sun. The last sentence of this article is dead on. Build a dome. AZ did.
    Don’t even try the “dry heat” thing regarding AZ weather. Like Gary Shandling said when he was asked about dry heat (he’s from AZ), he said “so is fire.”

  4. What a load of crap if they get their wish. Why wouldn’t the NFL help the browns when they requested money for a dome. Deal with it miami, or move the team

  5. this just in – the NFL does not like to schedule last season games in Green Bay, Chicago, Cleveland, Buffalo, Cinncinati and other cold weather cities w/o a dome.

  6. Convenient excuse to get the schedule back-loaded with home games when the season comes into crunch time in November / December. The league won’t go for it though. It would take an absolute moron to buy into their argument.
    The league’s answer should be: “There is a fine location for a team in Los Angeles that has drier, more comfortable climate in September. You want a franchise in Miami, the September heat and humidity is your problem. You will play a relatively balances schedule like everybody else.”

  7. Obviously you have never experienced a sunny September afternoon in South Florida.
    The Jets, Patriots and Bills ARE the people asking for the schedule change.

  8. The Bills wouldnt mind this one bit. Miami makes Buffalo wear their Blue jerseys, and the guys just wilt in the sun.
    This would be a huge loss of an advantage, I guarantee this idea comes from their marketing guys, I cant imagine Sporano would be too happy.

  9. I think they are concerned with the fans and not the players. That being said you don’t see any cold weather fans bitchin about the Dec/Jan wind and cold.

  10. If I’m the Dolphins and I have some stones, I WANT Sept./Oct. home games. If this is for the fans’ interests, then, yes, build a dome.

  11. “Dolphins’ schedule so that they play mostly on the road for the first several weeks of the schedule and then get to play at home for most of the late part of the year.”
    Yeah, and that situation worked out great for the Cardinals…

  12. It used to be that the Patriots and Dolphins had sort of a rotating homefield advantage. One year the Phins would come up here in December and freeze their asses off, and the next year the Pats would go down to Miami in December and sweat their asses off in the (relatively) hot weather. Maybe they should just play in the last week of October and first week of November so nobody gets too cold or too hot. Wouldn’t want to upset the delicate geniuses…

  13. I commend Stephen Ross for all he’s done with the team but this I strongly disagree with. Will it make that big of a difference? I mean the fans will show up regardless of the start time. The phins have always had well conditioned teams and I for one dont mind the 1 oclock games. Case in point in the 4 o’clock New Orleans game last season we had the saints gasping for air. Once halftime came and the sun set it was downhill from there. I can understand the fans need to be taken care of but the team takes importance over all matters.

  14. The NFL would be wise to do this. I am sure that the Dolphins are doing this for the comfort of the fans.
    The more important issue is the health of the players. All it would take is for a player to die out there. Anyone who has been at that stadium for a 1:00 game in September knows what I am talking about.

  15. Games in Sept. and Oct. in Miami are unbearable. I can’t tell you how miserable you feel in that sun drenched stadium at 1:00pm. Marlins’ day games get maybe 800 people on a week day because of the blistering temps. I won’t go to a fish game until November…because $500 to get heat stroke is too much. I sit in my pool with the outdoor flatscreen over the bar…and two coeds applying the sunscreen….Go Dolphins

  16. As Dolfan, this is horse$hit. Who gives a damn if its hot?!??!? If you dont like it, move back to New York to root for your stupid Jets. The heat is our home field advantage and is certainly part of the “experience” of going to a Fins game (plus its nice seeing all the hotties in bikinis and mini skirts). This is definitely one huge mistake on our new owners part.

  17. Coach Sparano would love to play in the heat again but our new owner Stephen Ross is all about the money and doesn’t want his VIP guests sweating all afternoon. The South Florida heat has always been an advantage to the Dolphins in the past, just like ice and snow at Lambeau or in Buffalo.

  18. The coaches want the 1pm games. Ross doesn’t because he wants to “enhance” the fan’s game experience (just like Goodell wants) and 1pm starts means more heat and less fans (and less money). To say that the League doesn’t cater to teams is a little ignorant though – Just last year, the league moved the start time of a Jets and/or Giants game because the original start time conflicted with a Jewish holiday and there too many Jewish fans that wouldn’t have been happy.

  19. I don’t think it’s the actual team that has a problem with the heat it’s the fans. If people are miserable watching games in person, where is the enjoyment in going?

  20. Well isn’t just like the sissies who play in Pink and Green to complain about the widdle heat down in Dorkville. What a bunch of girlie men.
    Somehow I dont see the Packers complaining because its too cold outside. And they call the team that plays in Dorkville a pro football team. What a joke. Then again, the entire city and team is a joke. Anybody wanna buy a condo?? ha ha ha LMAF………

  21. What a load of crap. They are just trying to avoid playing in NY, NE, and Buffalo in the frigid cold.

  22. I fail to see how the heat is such a big advantage..
    Most of the players in the league are from Florida, Texas or California and go back there to work out in the offseason anyway.

  23. the reason why the fins did request that was because they want to sell out all home games – for families its simply just to hot
    i did like the advantage but it makes sense and i think with a full stadium and better atmosphere that should result in another advantage

  24. As a lifelong Dolphins fan, I’ve never left a game early or not gone to a game because it was too hot, and that’s the general consensus with MOST fans. Can’t please all the elderly in Boca Raton though.

  25. what a load of crap, watching a game in the sun is still bearable compared to a snow storm
    at least parking and driving to the stadium isn’t such a hassle in heat!

  26. Sell out, the Dolphins can’t sell out, they have to many fair weathered fans it’s a joke, half the time channel 4 has to buy the remaining seats so their, so called team isn’t blacked out. Like I said b4 DRUNK by 10 am looking for fights. Dolphin fans suck! check out the stadium when their team is having a typical losing season, nothing but orange seats, encircled by RAINBOW COLORS, AHHH SUN LIFE STADIUM WHERE THE GAY THUG FAN STUMBLES!

  27. If some of you people could read you would see it is not for the players benefit, it is for the fans…hence the 5.00 shade surchage fee.

  28. Just start the games at 4:00 PM or play a couple early season Sunday/Monday night games in Miami. This was done for the Cards when they first moved to Arizona.

  29. Why would they have to road it the first few weeks?
    The fins owner requested that they simply don’t play the 1:00 game at home in September.
    Any combination of a road game or 2 and a few 3:15 games, and/or maybe a Sunday nighter and the problem is solved.
    Yes Florio, you may be correctly reading between the lines, a desperate plea to get home games during the end of the year (as the dolphins are historically challenged on the road in december),
    but the league doesn’t have to appease them by doing so.
    The legit request could be handled without giving Miami any veiled requests for advantages.

  30. this was because of the fans, not players.
    the fans just need to nut up and deal with it – it’s florida.

  31. maybe then can put some more seats in the poop deck seating area, I hear it’s very shady up there, or how about that brilliant design they had in the Sun Sentinel a few months back, stick some poles in the ground and throw a tin roof on the place, BANANA REPUBLIC DOWN HERE, it looked like a Haitian Shanty Town. Don’t worry about football anyways down here the spics are taking over and all we will have is soccer.

  32. Yeah, lets just put them on SNF & MNF on all hot-weather days.
    Yeah, let’s just let them play 6 in a row at-home for the tail end to the season.
    The tradition of looking for every possible edge continues.
    Gotta love the NFL.
    ps
    I say they get mandatory 15 minute “water breaks” like toddler football. Then, we can see the players sucking oranges, sitting under mist-machines on TV so all of America can make fun of Miami being a bunch of pansies.
    You don’t even run on every play. Train for the weather, take a sub or whatever. C’mon.
    THIS IS FOOTBALL PEOPLE!

  33. Do you really think that the Patriots, Bills, or Jets would prefer to go to Miami in September rather than go in December???

  34. When Tom Coughlin was coach of the Jaguars , He used the North Florida heat to his advantage. He always had the visitors in their dark uniforms and the visitors bench faces west so they roast in the sun. Now under Jack Del Rio the Jaguars only wear teal at home and he has given away a valuable weapon. Smart fans know if it is going to be hot, Wear something white and loose and drink plenty of water. What the hell are the Dolphins trying to do? It is just as hot if not hotter here in Jacksonville, And they are closer to the jet stream and get that nice seabreeze too.

  35. If the Dolphins had a long waiting list for season tickets then this would not be an issue. Since they are having trouble selling season tickets this had to come up.

  36. Stephen Ross has put this request in on behalf of the other owners J LO, Marc Anthony and Gloria Esteban. Its too hot for them to sit in a box and watch the games.
    Has Tampa Bay contacted the NFL yet??

  37. Hey snowbirds you can put on as much clothes as you want, we down here can only take off so much, legally!

  38. Fergie just backed out of her part ownership, and Wade is thinking about it, J LO, has lost most of her ass sweating at the 1 pm games but said she likes it and is going to stay, Stephen Ross is freaking out, he’s looking towards L.A. more his style, alot more A – LISTERS!!!

  39. Does anyone really think, that if I spend $250+ for tix, tailgating, parking, refreshments, etc that I worry about the afternoon heat ?? If I was so worried about the heat, I’d go to the local pub…It’s a lot cheaper and easier. And that same afternoon heat has always been an advantage over most teams. Why do we want to change that ?? Ross, you’ve gone too far with this….most fans aren’t in your class of people. Most fans are working slobs…leave us alone and put a better product on the field, not in the stands…

  40. Ugh, I remember double sessions in high school in the summer heat and I wanted to kill myself. However, they should want that as a home field advantage just like the northern teams playing in snow is a disadvantage to say, Miami or Tampa.

  41. Maybe the other conference teams wouldn’t mind so much if they were in the AFC SOUTH, like they should be.
    Of course, Bill naPolian wanted his team in the conference with 2 expansion teams.

  42. The Saints trained in the humid August heat for training camp last year. Wonder how that worked out…

  43. We do have a domed stadium. It is called the Nick Saban Memorial bubble at the NOVA Southeastern practice facility.
    Watch the schedule makers screw us again. We’ll no doubt have one of the toughest schedules like we do every year. We will not play in the heat during Sept but will play a lot of away night games up North in December.
    You heard it here first. The Fins will have one of the top 5 toughest schedules based on last year’s opponents records.

  44. Used to be that Miami (as well as the Bucs and Jags) preferred to play home in September; they were used to the heat and humidity after finishing training camp in Florida, and visiting teams forced to wear dark uniforms were gasping for air before halftime.
    Apparently priorities have changed; rather than looking for a competitive edge, it’s now all about the fan experience. In other words, it used to be all about winning but now it’s all about profits.

  45. Those of us in Jacksonville have had this issue for years, too. I would love to see just one season were we get a couple of late afternoon games in September or October. The last few years have been filled with 1:00 home starts.
    I understand the league’s position. What kind of TV audience a team draws has a lot to do with their start times.
    By the way, those of you commenting about the dark uniforms in the heat…that concept is a myth. There have been studies done measuring the level of heat and body temperature in both light and dark uniform clothing. No difference. Trust me, when it’s 130° on the field, you don’t care what color you’re wearing.
    Fans wear white because we’re sitting still.

  46. The problem with your argument Jaxdolphsfan is that as many on this site do not seem to understand is that the scheduled teams are pre-determined.
    And being that your Dolphins finished in third will be playing a 3rd place schedule for the AFC East. Logic alone shows that NE & the Jests schedules are more difficult as of today but as we all know teams strengths change year to year.
    Sounds like sour grapes or excuses based on your comment on how the dolphins get screwed by the schedulemakers.
    Looks like your owner is screwing your team by taking away a well known advantage being the Miami heat and humidity.

  47. I once sat in the sun in that stadium. I really didn’t care what the weather was doing. I really don’t think the fans are complaining that much. I think Dolphin fans just want to see a good game. One in which the Dolphins win. My concern with this article is that there is a sports writer out there that would actually suggest building a dome. Football, like baseball, needs to be played outside. But, unlike other outdoor sports football isn’t supposed to care what the weather is. Just play. To suggest, even sarcastically, that a team should build a dome is sacrilegious. If Mr. Smith is so concerned about Mr. Ross’ request for late afternoon games, he could always just cover women’s curling.

  48. This is all about money. Yes it’s hot at 1:00 for home games in sept./oct. but guess what? It’s still blazing hot at 4:00. And if you really want to get technical the vast majority of the fans are at the stadium 3 hours or more before kickoff. As a season ticket holder I would rather play at 4:00 for one reason, getting up at 7:30 am to load up all my stuff for tailgating sucks. I don’t feel like drinking till an hour or so before kickoff. Let’s not forget Miami is a party town, and a good portion of the fans are tired from the night before. The later games are MUCH more festive because fans have had a chance to sleep in, get to the stadium around lunch time, and get liquored up for several hours. That includes purchasing stadium beverages…….. which equates to more $$$ for the owner.

  49. This is all about money. Yes it’s hot at 1:00 for home games in sept./oct. but guess what? It’s still blazing hot at 4:00. And if you really want to get technical the vast majority of the fans are at the stadium 3 hours or more before kickoff. As a season ticket holder I would rather play at 4:00 for one reason, getting up at 7:30 am to load up all my stuff for tailgating sucks. I don’t feel like drinking till an hour or so before kickoff. Let’s not forget Miami is a party town, and a good portion of the fans are tired from the night before. The later games are MUCH more festive because fans have had a chance to sleep in, get to the stadium around lunch time, and get liquored up for several hours. That includes purchasing stadium beverages…….. which equates to more $$$ for the owner.

  50. I can see why the Dolphins want this. For years as I recall back in the ’70s and ’80s, the NFL tried as much as possible to schedule warm weather teams at home against cold weather teams late in the year so fans of the cold weather teams could use the week for a late-season vacation. This move would simply be a return to that.

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