Let me get the disclosures out of the way at the outset. Though I do not work directly on the account, you should know that Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission is a client of my employer, Tunheim Partners. I speak for myself and myself only.
That said, I have long been an advocate for publicly-funded sports stadia for our state. I was in favor of a new Twins ballpark when they began lobbying for one in 1997 and I was in favor of a new Vikings stadium at that time, as well.
I think Target Field turned out all right. I think TCF Bank Stadium worked out pretty well. I’m certain the new Vikings stadium will, too.
The Vikings want to play outdoors and I couldn’t agree more.
You all know how awesome I thought it was for us to play an outdoor home game this year.
Sure, we lost that game pretty badly but so what? It was awesome.
Part of my desire for outdoor football is certainly nostalgic; my earliest memories are of games at Metropolitan Stadium. Part of my desire for outdoor football is that for the past ten winters, I’ve played touch football out in the snow, so I know the winter weather really ain’t all that bad. But mostly, I want an outdoor stadium for the competitive advantage it will give the Vikings.
NFL Films listed the old Metropolitan Stadium as one of the top ten NFL home field advantages of all time. [WATCH.]
With the exception of Green Bay and Chicago, Most other NFL teams will be intimidated as hell when faced with the prospect of playing in Minnesota in November, December, and January in the snow and cold. Sure, Buffalo, New York and New England play in snow too, but it doesn’t get nearly as frigid on the East Coast, nearly as often, as it does here.
You don’t have to believe me, just crack your Vikings history books.
The Vikings won 11 division championships as an outdoor team compared to seven as a dome team. The most damning statistic: Four Super Bowl appearances as an outdoor team and zero since the dome.
So it looks like people are trying to poach our coaching talent now. The Strib‘s Chip Scoggins reported that Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt (nice name!) wants to hire receivers coach George Stewart and Judd Zulgad points out it appears the Buccaneers are making room for defensive line coach Karl Dunbar.
I have a lot of respect for the job most of the beat reporters do day in and day out, but I’ve got a major beef with this morning’s piece by the Strib‘s Chip Scoggins. In his rundown of top quarterbacks the Vikings might pick in the draft, he includes ESPN “draft guru” Mel Kiper‘s take on the player.
Maybe he included Kiper’s alleged analysis because he’s a recognizable name for casual fans but seriously, Kiper is a horrible analyst of draft picks.
He talks loudly and he has big hair and that’s his schtick. No one takes him seriously. Kiper’s “Overrated” draft picks include these Vikings: Running back Robert Smith, quarterback Daunte Culpepper (who had some good years, including the near-MVP 2004 season) and defensive end Jared Allen.
There are plenty of other evaluators of college talent that have much more credibility than Mr. Kiper. I’d take the NFL Network’s Mike Mayock or former Vikings safety Corey Chavous over Kiper any day of the week.