With half the country buried in snow, including Super Bowl city Dallas, it seems like a perfect time to bring up the notion we floated last March: It’s time to start talking about bringing the Super Bowl to Seattle.
You know, balmy, dry, 50-degree Seattle?
In recent years, the NFL has begun branching out its Super stage, moving from the favored warmer or controlled climes of Miami, Arizona, Tampa, San Diego and New Orleans to cold-weather cities like Detroit, Dallas, Indianapolis and New York.
Seattle is warmer and more snow free than most northern cities at this time of year.
When the Seahawks played the Steelers in Super Bowl XL at Ford Field in February 2006, Detroit was mired in its own snowstorm. The game was played indoors, but it was 33 degrees and snowing outside on Super Bowl Sunday.
It was 47 degrees and dry in Seattle.
The last four title games have been played in warm cities—Miami, Glendale and Tampa—where the temperatures were in the 60's or 70's. But now the NFL is beginning a stretch where it plays three of the next four games in cold-weather cities: Dallas this year, Indy next year and New York in 2014 (New Orleans is the 2013 site).
Just like the Detroit Super Bowl, these upcoming games are all rewards for those cities, chances for them to show off their shining new football cathedrals.
Should the NFL consider Seattle's Qwest Field for the Super Bowl?
Ford Field opened in 2002, Cowboys Stadium opened in 2009, Indy’ Lucas Oil Stadium opened in 2008 and the New Meadowlands Stadium opened this season.
Seattle never got to show off Qwest Field, which opened in 2002, on such a grand stage. Maybe it was because Seahawks management didn’t push for it. More likely it was because the NFL didn’t want to consider playing in an outdoor stadium in a northern city in February.
Well, with New York hosting in 2014, that argument is out. The NFL has no excuse and the Seahawks need to start submitting their proposals to host a game in the latter half of this decade.
The weather in Seattle in February is very favorable for a football game, with temperatures often in the 40's or 50's and little or no rainfall. That makes it appealing not only for game day, but for events around the city in the week leading up to the game.
You certainly can’t say the same for Detroit in 2006 and Dallas this year, or probably for Indy next year and New York in 2014.
Here’s a look at the past five Super Bowl dates and the weather in Seattle and the Super Bowl cities on those days:
Feb. 4, 2010
Seattle: 57 degrees, light rain.
Miami: 78 degrees, no rain.
Feb. 1, 2009
Seattle: 44 degrees, no rain.
Tampa: 68 degrees, no rain.
Feb. 3, 2008
Seattle: 39 degrees, no rain.
Glendale, Ariz: 61 degrees, no rain.
Feb. 4, 2007
Seattle: 51 degrees, light rain.
Miami: 69 degrees, heavy rain.
Feb. 5, 2006
Seattle: 47 degrees, no rain.
Detroit: 33 degrees, snow.
Some people will try to argue that Qwest Field, at 67,000 seats, doesn’t meet the NFL’s required capacity of 70,000. But the stadium is capable of expanding to 72,000, so that argument is moot.
Really, there is no reason at all for Seattle not to host a Super Bowl. In fact, outside of California, Arizona and Florida, it’s probably the best place to do it.
And it’s time.
Check out this slideshow to find out why the Seahawks have not had a draft pick make the Pro Bowl in the last five years.