Why hasn’t Denver ever hosted a Super Bowl? There are NFL requirements the Mile High City can’t meet

One of the most cherished moments in Denver Sports history happened on January 25, 1998. That’s when the Denver Broncos won their first championship 31-24 over the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XXXII.

Super Bowl XXXII - Green Bay Packers vs Denver Broncos - January 25, 1998
Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway proudly shows off the Lombardi Trophy after the Broncos 31-24 victory over the Packers in the Super Bowl XXXII at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego on Jan. 25, 1998.

Anthony Neste/Getty Images

The Broncos have captured the Lombardi Trophy three times in team history and each one was won outside the Mile High City.

Super Bowl XXXII-Green Bay Packers V Denver Broncos
Team Owner and President Pat Bowlen of the Denver Broncos raises the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Super Bowl XXXII game between the Green Bay Packers v the Denver Broncos on January 25, 1998 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego.

Getty Images

So, what would it take for Denver to host the Super Bowl?

The NFL’s general requirements to host the Super Bowl include interest from the local football team, stadium quality, hotel inventory, a media center, corporate and community support, and approval from three-quarters of the league’s owners. There also need to be practice fields for both teams and it either needs to be warm enough or in a climate-controlled environment like a dome.

The Broncos are certainly interested in hosting major NFL events. In 2018, the Broncos and the city of Denver made a bid to host the NFL Draft. Denver has hosted many major sporting events like Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game in 1997 and 2021. Also, NHL’s All-Star Game in 2001 and the NBA’s All-Star Game in 2005.

All-Star Games are very profitable. According to Visit Denver, the economic impact of MLB’s All-Star Game in 2021 was $57 million.  



Then there is the stadium itself. Empower Field at Mile High opened in 2001, making it the 15th oldest stadium in the league. Two stadiums older than Mile High have hosted the Super Bowl. Everbank Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida in 2005 and the Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana, which is set to host Super Bowl 59 next year. The reasons are simple, one stadium is in a warm climate and the other is in a dome.

Which brings us to the final and maybe the most important reason why the city of Denver has not hosted the Super Bowl, the weather. The NFL required temperature in the month leading up to the Super Bowl is an average temperature of 50 degrees. Denver’s average is 30.7 degrees.

Cold weather cities like Minneapolis, Indianapolis, and Detroit have all hosted the Super Bowl in the past, but unlike Denver, those stadiums are in a dome.

And since Empower Field at Mile High isn’t in a climate-controlled environment like those, don’t expect to see the Super Bowl in Denver anytime soon. 

Source: Rocky Mountain News

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