Should The 2014 Super Bowl Really Be Played In New York?
Today, the National Football League is prepared to do something that it’s never done before. No, it’s not issuing a mandate to crack down on steroids (let’s not get too ahead of ourselves). Rather, the league is prepared to award the 2014 Super Bowl to—drumroll, please—New York City!
Well, sort of. In reality, they’re actually prepared to award the Super Bowl to New Jersey at the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford where the N.Y. Giants and N.Y. Jets play their home games. But that still makes it significant, because for the first time in NFL history, the Super Bowl will be played in a city that’s not warm in the month of February when the biggest sporting event of the year takes place. It means that instead of balmy temperatures and bikinis, the 2014 Super Bowl will likely feature the potential for Nor’easters, blistery winds and a 65-year-old rock legend rocking out with mittens during the halftime show.
In other words: The No Fun League is ready to have some fun! And the plan already has some folks up in arms. For starters, the NFL has changed significantly since the days when title games were played outdoors in cold cities (back before the Super Bowl was even invented—ask your grandpa or something). Back then, high-powered offenses scored 20 points. Things are a lot different now. Elite NFL teams move the ball up and down the field and score a lot of points. So, some NFL fans worry that moving the Super Bowl to a cold city could hurt the integrity of the modern game by throwing elements of the weather into the mix and forcing teams to play differently than they do during the regular season.
There’s also the matter of providing an entertaining Super Bowl week. No offense to East Rutherford, NJ, but it ain’t exactly Miami. Or Tampa. Or New Orleans. Can the week’s festivities be moved to New York City? Of course. But the Big Apple ain’t exactly Miami, Tampa or New Orleans, either. Not at the beginning of February, at least.
Don’t get me wrong. As a fan of football, the New Meadowlands Stadium is the perfect place for a Super Bowl. If it’s anything like the old stadium, it’s treacherous playing there regardless of what the weather is like. It’s windy and cold on most Sunday afternoons. It’d make for a great game. And if somehow it managed to snow a couple inches prior to the game? Even better. It’d add an extra element to a game that’s already the most watched of the year.
But moving the Super Bowl to New York just for the sake of doing it isn’t the right move for the NFL. It’ll be interesting to sit and watch how it goes down. And there’s a good chance that the game will receive high ratings because of the curiosity factor. But the novelty will eventually wear off and professional football’s big game will wind up back down below the Mason-Dixon Line after the 2014 game.
Right back where it belongs.