With NJ getting a Super Bowl in their new roof-less stadium, a lot of the media folks have been talking about the possibility of Green Bay getting to host a game.Â Jason Wilde has a recent article about the very concept.Â It’s a neat idea to pay respect to the history of the game by holding a Super Bowl in a city like Green Bay, but from a practical/marketing standpoint it’s likely a disaster.
First, there are the logistics.Â There aren’t enough hotels in Green Bay to accommodate the fans for a regular season game.Â There isn’t an airport that would allow fans from all over the country/world to fly in without making multiple connections.Â There is no infrastructure that would allow relatively easy transport around town (big enough roads, taxis, public transit, etc).Â If you’ve been on Lombardi Ave after a game lets out, you know that it’s absolute gridlock for up to two hours.Â Imagine that for an entire week… The city just can’t support that kind of an audience.
Next, there is the entertainment conundrum.Â The Super Bowl is so much bigger than the game.Â It’s a week long party and media event.Â Players have expressed the lack of things to do in Green Bay (Ray Rice famously commented on the issue last year after the Ravens visited town).Â It’s a great town to roll into on Sunday morning, check out the Packer Hall of Fame, tailgate and see a game.Â Spending a week there as someone paying potentially thousands of dollars to see a game NOT featuring the Packers?Â Probably not where you want to be.Â The Top 10 nightlife options on Yelp include a make-your-own steak joint and a nationwide chicken chain.Â Yelp lists no restaurants receiving the “$$$$” rating, meaning your fine dining options are extremely limited.Â So really, for the hotshots who go to every Super Bowl for the status that comes with it, their only serious entertainment options involve driving two hours south to Milwaukee.Â For the diehard fans of whatever team is playing, let’s hope the local Applebees has some extra staff on hand.
Finally, there’s the game itself.Â Any football fan in the northern US knows what it’s like to attend an outdoor game in February.Â It’s miserable.Â I’d estimate up to 30% of your attention is diverted away from the game because you’re suffering frostbite or sweating profusely because you have double-digit layers of clothing.Â And the performance on the field generally suffers as well.Â Football players don’t enjoy playing in sub-zero weather and/or snow.Â The games slow down, and if precipitation happens, it gets really sloppy.Â Just watch some late season Pittsburgh games when that field starts falling apart in the rain.Â Want to see a 10-3 Super Bowl NOT involving elite defenses with upwards of 7 fumbles per team?Â I don’t.
So while rewarding NJ for building an expensive new stadium is a nice experiment in cold weather championship games… let’s not get carried away.Â Most of the fans of the teams competing are watching from home, so let’s give them a good game to see.Â For those spending obscene dollar amounts to attend the festivities, let’s give them a good time as well.