NFL Super Bowl Plan if Severe Weather Threatens Big Game

It looked like an assembly line at the North Pole.

Snow was brought down by chutes onto a tarp, where it was cleared by workers operating plows or cylindrical brushes.

In the upper reaches of MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford — home to the first cold-weather outdoor Super Bowl on Feb. 2 — the snow was moved to the concourses, gathered into piles and vaporized by melters powered by jet engines.

On the day after a foot of snow was left behind, Eric Grubman called it a “dress rehearsal.”

The 1,300-member crew at MetLife Stadium shoveled snow from seats and cleared parking lots this morning after Tuesday’s storm.

Grubman, an executive vice president with the National Football League, said the stadium operations staff and National Football League production staff were pretending they had less than a day to prepare for the Super Bowl.

“At 7 o’clock this morning, they put themselves on the clock,” Grubman said. “They are running to about an 18-hour allotted amount of time. And we have people watching and evaluating and grading. So we’re treating this as if it’s pregame and we have to get the bowl cleared.”

If a storm like Tuesday’s strikes the day before the Super Bowl, Grubman said, he’s confident the game will be played at the appointed time of 6:30 p.m.

“I saw blacktop wherever I was on New Jersey roads,” he said during a news conference at the stadium. “Right before I came to MetLife Stadium, I was over at Newark Airport. They were free and clear and operating. There were some delays carried over from (Tuesday) but the planes were coming in smooth — I didn’t see any snow that was any problem at the airport.”

NFL Super Bowl plan if severe weather threatens the big game

NFL Executive Vice President Eric Grubman spoke about a plan to change Super Bowl game time or day if a weather event stopped people from getting to the game and forced resources to be diverted to the rest of the state.
He would not speculate on what would happen if such a snowstorm struck the day of the Super Bowl.

However, Grubman said the NFL could change the day of the game if a storm threatened to prevent fans from getting to the stadium and diverted vital emergency resources from the rest of the region.

Instead of Feb. 2, the game could be played anytime between Friday, Jan. 31, and Monday, Feb. 3, he said.

During the news conference at the stadium, Grubman also showed off “warm welcome kits,” the care packages fans will receive at the stadium.

Keeping with the theme of embracing the cold, the package contains hand and face warmers, a knit cap and lip balm, along with a seat cushion, AM radio and cup holder.

Grubman, a New Jersey native, said football fans are used to all kinds of weather and predicted they will look at the cold-weather game as sort of a badge of honor.

“When you go to the Super Bowl, you’ve got an instant bragging right,” he said. “And I can’t you tell you how many people have told me over the years that they were at the ‘coldest game ever played,’ they were at the ‘coldest playoff game ever played,’ they were at the ‘coldest game at MetLife.’ “

No one brags that they were at the hottest football game ever played.

SOURCE: NJ Post & Jimmy F. Show Video NBC

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