The Super Bowl will get the cold-weather treatment for the first time in 2014 when the big game is hosted outdoors in New York (or, you know, New Jersey) at Metlife Stadium.
It's a precedent that could open the door for a host of other cities in the future. Chicago is one of those places, and Mayor Rahm Emanuel pitched the idea of bringing the game to the Windy City in a private meeting with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on Thursday.
"I found out a secret -- that is, the commissioner's in-laws live in the Chicago area, and I'm holding them hostage until that happens," the mayor joked.
Bits on kidnapping aside, Emanuel explained his pitch to the Chicago Sun-Times.
"Obviously, they're gonna have their first (cold weather) Super Bowl in another city. We'll see how that goes," Emanuel said. "But we talked about why (not) Chicago? Just two weeks ago (we) had a bunch of world leaders here. Sixth-largest NATO summit. And if we can do that, it would be an appropriate place to have a Super Bowl."
Chicago is a beloved city, and has long been a favorite road destination for visiting professional athletes. Soldier Field's relatively-low 63,500 capacity could be an issue, though Goodell said the most important aspect for a host city is being able to provide an "infrastructure to host the hundreds of thousands of people that come in."
Ultimately, the hopes of any cold-weather site will probably go back to how the event goes off in New York. The weather risks are very real, but cities like New York and Chicago are considered civic jewels of the country. If it's possible to bring the country's biggest sporting event to these places, every effort should be made.