Could the Super Bowl date change? It is possible if New York gets hit with another storm like the one that slammed into the area this week.
Super Bowl XLVIII (that’s 48 in years) is scheduled for Sunday, February 2 in East Rutherford, New Jersey, but there is a very real chance that either date, time or location could be changed due to inclement weather. It is, after all, the middle of a particularly brutal winter.
When it was announced that this year’s Super Bowl would be played in New Jersey, this time of the year, many were left scratching their heads.
MetLife Stadium — home of the New York Jets and New York Giants — may be the reason for the Super Bowl date change, something that hasn’t happened, ever. The most obvious reason is that the site doesn’t have a dome, which would make the weather an almost-non-issue.
However, that is not the case and the NFL has planned for this contingency and has scheduled the possible change in Super Bowl date for any time between Friday and Monday next weekend.
“We are embracing the weather,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said Monday. “Football is played in the elements.”
If a major storm hits the region — which is not expected — or frigid temperatures affect the area — as is happening in the coming week — the Super Bowl date could be changed to anywhere from Friday, January 31 to Monday, February 3.
Based on current meteorological models this scenario is unlikely and a worst case scenario.
Super Bowl XLVIII is the first to be played in an outdoor stadium and NFL officials are hoping fans will embrace the first such game in league history.
Fans who are brave enough to come to New Jersey to witness the Denver Broncos take on the Seattle Seahawks will receive ear muffs, hat, lip balm, mittens, cup holder, scarf, tissues, a radio to listen to the game, hand warmers, a seat cushion, and a waist-wrap — like those the quarterbacks wear when it gets cold.
On Wednesday — following the latest storm — MetLife Stadium organizers, with the help of 1,000 workers cleared 13-inches of snow from the stands as a way to test their preparedness. A snow melter truck/Goliath capable of handling 1.2 billion pounds of snow per hour is also on standby if needed on the big day.
NFL vice president of operations Eric Grubman said:
“I think that the various events that we have are going off without a hitch and in fact have already begun because staging this stadium is an event in and of itself. We don’t have a crystal ball on weather, but we’re confident we’ll be able to have our events.”
The Super Bowl XLVIII date change could also take place if travel restrictions are put in place due to dangerous driving conditions. This week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie declared a state of emergency.
Grubman says the only sure thing at this point is that it is going to be very cold.
[Image via Angelmaker666/deviantART]