The eagerly-anticipated return of the Superbowl to the Bayou City is quickly approaching, as Houston is set to host in 2017. As a city of progressive individuals, we Houstonians are always looking for ways to do thing bigger and better than before. Well, why not use the opportunity of being the host of Superbowl 51 to leave a mark on the way that events are handled going forward?
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How can this be accomplished? Well for starters, let’s discuss the Superbowl site selection process. What could be more exciting and create more fanfare than to create an opportunity for the fans to be involved in the selection of the next site for a major NFL event?
How about adding some incentive for success? Starting with Superbowl 51, I propose that the Superbowl winner should automatically be granted an opportunity to host the next available Superbowl. Now how about that for an incentive? Not only do you bring the prestige of a Lombardi trophy to your city, but winning literally translates to millions of dollars in revenue generated for the winning city. The business community in each city will be pitted into a rivalry to outshine each other in support of their teams.
Well, after the Superbowl each year, the first major event on the schedule is the NFL Scouting Combine. Currently, every year it is held in Indianapolis at Lucas Oil Stadium. Say it with me….boooorrrriinnnngg!!! (Throwing a dart at a Colts logo). The Superbowl runner up should be rewarded as the host of the NFL combine. The event is one that does not require much lead time to prepare for. It is fair to assume that every NFL facility is equipped with the necessary tools to capture measurables. It’s simply a matter of arranging travel for players and media to the host city.
The next event on the schedule is the NFL draft. Again, another event that is basically on “repeat”, even though I applaud the move to Chicago this year, I feel that every NFL city should have access to the opportunity to potentially host the draft.
Pro Football Hall of Fame inductions are currently held every year in Canton, Ohio, where the Pro Football Hall of Fame resides. Here’s another opportunity to “add some sizzle” to this event. While it certainly is not my intention in this “proposed” change to move the shrine from its current position, who made the rule that the ceremony has to be held in Canton? NFL players should in my opinion, receive the greatest individual achievement of their careers in a place similar to where they earned those accolades – in a NFL stadium. This event can be held on a random draw/lottery basis where every NFL city has an opportunity to host. How cool would it be to have an induction ceremony with a stadium full of fans, and the great legends get to run through the tunnel to the sounds of raving fans just one more time before wearing their gold jackets for the first time?
Last but not least, there’s the NFL Pro Bowl. Although the NFL has invested a great deal of time and effort in making the Pro Bowl interesting, let’s be honest for a second and admit that it just isn’t attention-worthy. In the interest of safety, I think that the game itself should be abolished. In its place I recommend combining the annual awards ceremony (currently held during Superbowl week) where the best players are rewarded anyway. After the ceremony, proceed with skills competitions for each of the respective position groups, such as the Quarterback accuracy challenge, fastest man competition, lineman’s challenge, etc.
Selfishly and shamelessly, I think that Houston should be the first city to launch my “proposed” NFL events calendar….my only question for all of you is, when would should I start planning to move into the commissioners office?