Minnesota could know by the end of the week if Minneapolis is in the running to host the Super Bowl in 2018.
Vikings team president Mark Wilf made the case for bringing the NFL championship to Minnesota at the league’s fall meeting in Washington D.C. today.
Team spokesman Lester Bagley said the Vikings and a handful of other teams offered bids to the league’s Super Bowl Advisory Committee.
“We’re confident we’ll get a Super Bowl in 2018, 2019 or 2020. But we’re pushing hard on 2018,” Bagley said. “We have a great market and great hospitality. And we’re also going to have a great stadium. It’s going to have a fan experience that’s second to none.”
Bagley said Wilf told NFL owners and commissioner Roger Goodell Minnesota should be considered a finalist because the new stadium stems from a public-private partnership. In a set of agreements finalized last week, the Vikings will be responsible for about half of the new stadium’s construction costs, or $477 million. The rest comes from the state of Minnesota and the city of Minneapolis. The stadium is scheduled to open in 2016.
“It’s similar to Indianapolis, Dallas and Detroit. All communities that stepped up and help fund a new stadium. And part of the selection criteria for the NFL is which communities stepped up to solve stadium problems, and there’s no doubt that Minnesota stepped up,” Bagley said.
Other cities in the running include Tampa Bay, New Orleans and Indianapolis. Bagley said the league could come up with a short list of contenders in the next two days, and is expected to make a decision in May.
The Twin Cities hosted the 1992 Super Bowl, featuring the Washington Redskins and the Buffalo Bills. It wasn’t exactly the hottest ticket in Super Bowl history. January in Minnesota was a tough sell for NFL fans used to balmier climes for the Super Bowl. But with next year’s Super Bowl to be played outdoors in New Jersey in February, an indoor stadium might be a welcome change.