This is reprinted from an AV Club column I wrote back in January of 2010. And with the announcement that Denver wants to host a Super Bowl, I think it will help.
The Super Bowl XLIV roster is set with the New Orleans Saints taking on the Indianapolis Colts in Miami on February 7th. The NFL's culminating game is typically set in a warm weather climate like south Florida, but is also played in cold weather locales that sport domes over their playing fields. One place the Super Bowl will never be played is right here in Denver. Shocking? No. But the Super Bowl can be played here even though it has virtually a snow ball's chance in the Superdome.
Denver is too cold and snowy to host a Super Bowl right? Not really. A few years back I started to mark the weather on the day of the Super Bowl after Broncos owner Pat Bowlen publicly expressed interest in hosting the game here. It’s understood why the NFL wants a warm climate- or at least a dome for the league's biggest game. But after noticing the Denver weather being mild on these days, I knew Denver would never have a shot unless the facts were made available.
Most would assume the weather in Denver at this time of year would be unpleasant, but in the last ten years, the weather on the day of the Super Bowl has been sufficient enough to host the game. I'm not saying it was warm, but temperatures were certainly agreeable.
Check out the weather in Denver on those days:
Super Bowl XLIII- Feb 1, 09- 46 degrees Steelers 27 – Cardinals 23
Super Bowl XLII- Feb 3, 08- 43 degrees Giants 17 – Patriots 14
Super Bowl XLI- Feb 4, 07- 46 degrees Colts 29 – Bears 17
Super Bowl XL- Feb 5, 06- 42 degrees Steelers 21 – Seahawks 10
Super Bowl XXXIX- Feb 6, 05- 37 degrees Patriots 24 – Eagles 21
Super Bowl XXXVIII- Feb 1, 04- 28 degrees Patriots 32 – Panthers 29
Super Bowl XXXVII -Jan 26, 03- 60 degrees Tampa Bay 48 - Oakland 21
Super Bowl XXXVI- Feb 3, 02- 46 degrees Patriots 20 - Rams 17
Super Bowl XXXV- Jan 28, 01- 24 degrees Ravens 34 - Giants 7
Super Bowl XXXIV- Jan 30, 00- 33 degrees Rams 23 - Titans 16
As you can see, the low temperature was 24 (a little chilly) and the high was 60 but in Colorado, an average of 40.5 degrees means you can break out the flip flops and a fat guy in the stands has taken off his shirt. The important thing is there was zero precipitation on those days. No snow and more importantly, no rain.
Also note that on the 60 degree day it would have been a particularly nice for Denver to host the Super Bowl: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the holy piss out of the Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII and you could have thrown trash on the Raiders as they left the field.
So even if the day of the game was cold, it shouldn't affect what goes on in the field. Football is a cold weather sport and games played in chilly weather, and particularly snow, are celebrated as "classics" and what fans claim is what football is all about. How is it that when we reach the pinnacle of the season, suddenly those weather conditions are deemed unfavorable? If the outcome is that important, maybe all games should be moved to domes or a warm weather backdrop. And maybe they shouldn’t tackle each other anymore either.
In an ironic turn, Denver will be considered as a future site for the NHL's Winter Classic. The Classic is a fabulous outdoor hockey game most recently played on January 1st in Boston's Fenway Park between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Boston Bruins. The high in Denver the day this was held was 42 degrees. That translates into a slush bowl, not a Winter Classic.
Having the Super Bowl in Denver would not only be coup for the local economy but it would be a feather in the cap of the Broncos organization. Denver, a great NFL city, deserves the Super Bowl but it will never happen because of its woefully misunderstood winter weather. This Super Bowl Sunday, pull your face out of the cheese dip for a few minutes to walk outside and ponder the weather. Chances are good it will be perfect for football. That is until they award Denver the game and then it’s blizzard time baby.