They should absolutely play the Super Bowl anywhere and everywhere. Why?
1. There is no such thing as “neutral” or “ideal” conditions.
Sometimes the Super Bowl is in hot weather venues that get hot. Sometimes it rains. Sometimes indoors they blow off a bunch of smoky fireworks at halftime. Sometimes the punt hits the scoreboard. You get the idea.
I’ve heard many people (some named “Mike”) argue that cold weather would have some sort of special impact on the game, but there is no such thing as “normal” weather. Normal is in the eye of the beholder. Sometimes the snow causes a fumble, but sometimes the sun causes a muffed punt.
2. I don’t care about the people actually attending the game.
The vast, vast majority Super Bowl viewers will watch the game on TV. Since the type of fan who attends the Super Bowl is different than your run-of-the-mill football fan, I could envision a scenario in which there are empty seats if the weather is bad, but I find it more likely that those tickets would find their way into the hands of someone who wanted to use them. And I don’t care. If you didn’t want to use them, you could have given them to me.
3. I don’t care about the media.
The Super Bowl is not media vacation day. Your job if you are a reporter, in case you forgot, is to provide news coverage of a football game. It is not to gawk at scantily clad enhanced women on South Beach.
If you can’t find a hotel in Green Bay, tough. Stay in Appleton or Milwaukee or Sheboygan or even Chicago, and drive or hop on a Megabus. Don’t like the nightlife? I don’t care. Find a dive and talk to Rusty the trucker at the end of the bar for awhile. You are there to report. If you want a vacation, take a vacation.
4. Bad weather games are fun to watch most of the time.
Sometimes they suck. Rain can really muck things up. But sometimes they’re awesome. ESPN replays the Ice Bowl every year for a reason. The snow globe game was awesome. Viniateri kicking in the snow was cool. I even liked the old Fog Bowl, where not being able to see was half the fun. Snow games rule in general. There is no reason that it should not snow on the Super Bowl.
5. It’s fair.
There are 32 teams in the NFL, but only about 6 of the home cities benefit from the Super Bowl. Basically, the media’s desire to gawk at women on South Beach costs Chicago and Green Bay and Buffalo and Cincinnati and Cleveland and Pitt and Denver and Kansas City and every other cold or small city with a team millions of dollars by not allowing them to have the Super Bowl.
6. Detroit had a Super Bowl. So did Jacksonville.
7. Baseball plays their championship in cold weather.
The November Classic could be played in Florida or LA or Arizona every year. I know it’s a series and so you can move back and forth between venues, which is different, but baseball doesn’t care about weather or city size, and they easily could.
8. “No one wants to go to X in February” isn’t true.
Denver has skiing. Green Bay has all sorts of history, as does Pitt. Chicago is a huge city with a ton of stuff to do, as is Philly. New Jersey is close to New York. If you are concerned with selling these Super Bowls, there are ways to sell these Super Bowls.
9. I don’t care about the players.
If you are playing in the Super Bowl; if you have earned the great honor of playing in the Super Bowl, I don’t care about whether or not you have enough night clubs to go out to in the 3 days before the Super Bowl. I really don’t. After you win, you can go to New Orleans all you want.
All of the arguments against having a Northern Super Bowl strike me as serving a group of people that I could not care less about. Weather is part of football. When you play football as a kid, you play in whatever weather you have. If you play on Thanksgiving, you’ve probably played in a cold game or two. High school kids play in cold and in slop, and don’t earn a cent for doing so. Weather is normal. The Super Bowl is already fake enough. The NFL should open the field to everyone for the simple reason that it would make the game more interesting, and I would argue, better.
20 minutes ago