The awarding of the 2014 Super Bowl to the New York/New Jersey area will, in actuality, be a reward for building a new stadium -- as was the case with Detroit, Dallas and Indianapolis, cities that have recently hosted or are set to have the big game.
It can't be overlooked that having the NFL's showcase game in the New York Metropolitan Area, where the league is headquartered, is a key element to the Super Bowl most likely being played in the new Meadowlands Stadium, too.
The game wouldn't be shielded from Mother Nature, though. This isn't in a dome like Ford Field or Lucas Oil Stadium. This has the potential to be a throwback to the Ice Bowl.
Still, the precedent that could be set by a Super Bowl being played outdoors, in a cold weather city, begs the question: Why not put some cold-weather, open-air stadiums into the rotation? That likelihood appears to be a major reach because, again, outside of Florida and New Orleans, most of the cities getting the Super Bowl have built new stadiums.
Even so, let's look at five colder-weather cities with outdoor stadiums that could make for interesting Super Bowl hosts:
Lambeau Field, Green Bay, Wis.
Making a case: The experience at this tradition-packed stadium is like no other in the NFL. There isn't a bad seat in the house; the locker rooms and other amenities are top notch, and the people of the NFL's smallest city could not be more hospitable.
Why it won't happen: Even with Milwaukee and Appleton within range, hotel space would be an issue. So would a lack of practice facilities. The limited airport traffic could be a problem as well. Super Bowls also are events and there could be a shortage of venues to host the multitude of seminars and parties that accompany the game itself. Not to mention, the average temperature in Green Bay in February is around 20 degrees. And it snows. A lot.
M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore
Making a case: Owner Steve Bisciotti might have enough sway to make this an option if he can get the civic support to push for a Super Bowl. This stadium has some of the best sightlines in the NFL. It is located right near the Inner Harbor and there is plenty of hotel and convention space right downtown. Any spillover can intrude the metro-Washington D.C. area. There are three airports that also could be used. Can you say crab cakes?
Qwest Field, Seattle
Making a case: The mystique of playing in the Northwest is intriguing, especially since Seattle is one of the most beautiful and unique cities in the NFL. The Seahawks' and University of Washington's facilities can be available and getting around the fabulous downtown area is easy. The average high temps in February are in the high 40s and low 50s.
Why it won't happen: To a lot of people, Seattle is viewed to be too far away from everything (although Miami isn't really close to a lot of places either, but it does have the sun and the beach). February is one of the rainiest months in this rainy city, too.
LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.
Making a case: This is another nice stadium with modern touches and great viewing perspectives. The weather is temperate as well. Nashville is one of this country's most underrated cities in terms of things to do, community involvement and the kindness of its citizens. The Titans and Vanderbilt have available practice facilities. It also could be a nice reward for a city that's recently been damaged by a major flood and the emotional loss in 2009 of former Titan and local fan favorite Steve McNair.
Why it won't happen: Like everywhere else mentioned on this list, it's not a new facility. Though the temperatures aren't bad (average in the low 40s), some real nasty weather can arise out of nowhere and wreak havoc. The amount of lodging locales might also be an issue.
Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
Making a case: With the stadium located between Boston and Providence, the dual-city approach could be similar to how Miami and Fort Lauderdale dilute the amount of human traffic for the Super Bowl. This also could allow for maximizing pre- and -post Super Bowl entertainment options and lodging needs. Owner Bob Kraft is very influential and he's been speaking very favorably of New York getting the Super Bowl, which may mean he's angling to make a push.
Why it won't happen: The game-day road traffic to the stadium is a nightmare. A new infrastructure near the stadium could have to be put in place to handle something as massive as a Super Bowl. The distance of the stadium from Boston and Providence could be a logistical problem for all of the pre-game events that take place the week leading to the game. It would seem like almost everything would need to be centered in Boston to make it work.