Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel is known for his ability to get his way. Budgets and ordinances get passed through the city council with barely any opposition. But, with New Jersey hosting the first-ever Super Bowl in weather under 50 degrees in four decades, he wants Chicago to be the next cold-weather city to host not only football’s biggest event, but the NFL draft.
Mayor Emanuel spoke with reporters the day after the Super Bowl, and was very happy that the NFL decided to have a game in a cold-weather city. He expressed his reasons for Chicago to host the game and the draft: that the city would move forward, economically it would benefit, and since the city has never had either event, it would boost the city onto the national stage. Emanuel did not specify if talks had begun for the Super Bowl in 2019 but mentioned that the process has started.
When the NFL relaxed the rule that the championship games had to be played in cities where the average February temperature had to be at least 50 degrees, a lot of teams jockeyed for the attention. But the New York Giants and Jets, who play in their new $1.6 billion stadium, was the best venue for the NFL to show off their biggest event. NFL Commissioner Roger Godell talked about how it was important to think more about allowing colder cities to host the Super Bowl, and that the founder of the Super Bowl, Pete Rozelle, would be pleased with how well the event turned out.
But, of course this Super Bowl almost didn’t even happen on Sunday. While the average February temperature in New Jersey is around 40 degrees, the threat of snow was looming. Just a week before the game, snow hit the East Rutherford area, forcing crews to use shovels to clean off the seats and field. But Mother Nature was really kind, and didn’t bring any more snow until the day after the game.
Of course, now all the NFL teams that are in the northern regions want a piece of the action; everyone except Green Bay, that is, because Goodell has stated that the logistics of needing almost 30,000 hotel rooms and other accommodations would put the small town nowhere near the capability to hosting the game. Other locations that are being considered are Denver, Minneapolis, and even New Jersey again. Chicago should have no reason not to be included in this mix. Even though this winter has been one of the snowiest on record, the average temperature in February is 38 degrees for the windy city. And, even while only seating a little over 60,000 fans, Soldier Field would be an iconic location for the game to commence. Besides, Chicago has Lollapalooza every August, and that attracts over 100,000 people for three days in Grant Park.
So Chicago’s mayor is going to keep gunning for the NFL to bring the Super Bowl and the draft to the City of Big Shoulders. It is a major city, it has the hotel space, and it would be held in one of the most historic stadiums. If Mayor Rahm Emanuel gets his way and brings a Super Bowl and a draft to Chicago, it would be a big boost.
By Renayle Fink
States Guide USA