Chicago Sun-Times

Debate rages on over Vikings move to TCF Bank Stadium

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The debate over Monday night's game being moved to TCF Bank Stadium raged on Friday when Lance Briggs spoke with reporters.

The veteran linebacker made it clear that he prefers the game be moved to another NFL venue instead of playing at the University of Minnesota's home field.

"When you're playing on a surface similar to what I'm standing on right now, it's everything," Briggs said, referring to the carpeted but otherwise hard floor inside the press room at Halas Hall. "Anyone falling. Anyone slipping. A lot of guys, we all have families, we all want to protect ourselves, and if it's more based on fan base or how many more fans are going to be there who are from Chicago than Minnesota, than I just don't agree with it.

"You play the game. Regardless if it's the 50th anniversary of the Minnesota Vikings or not, we didn't build their arena. We didn't build that stadium over there. It collapsed. So the next thing is to go to a stadium that is sufficient, like the Detroit Lions, Indianapolis Colts, anywhere, St. Louis Rams. Anywhere like that. But that's not what we're doing."

Players main concern is that the artificial turf field will be frozen solid and will put players at greater risk for concussions and other injuries. The NFL plans to inspect the field later today.

Unlike other fields in cold-weather NFL stadiums, there are no heating coils under the field at TCF Bank Stadium. Workers are expected to thaw the field with heaters before placing a thermal tarp over it to prevent it from freezing again.

"Snow boots," Briggs said when asked if he planned on wearing special shoes. "You know, the boots with the tennis rackets on the bottom. Those are the ones right there. Cross country skis."

Keeping the game in Minnesota allows more season-ticket holders to go, although it will be interesting to see how many show up in what is expected to be frigid conditions. Either way, Briggs said he wasn't unsympathetic to the Vikings' financial concerns, but said the move to TCF could end up costing the franchise either way.

"They're taking a hit regardless," he said. "They're taking a hit even playing there. But what's the point of playing there if Adrian Peterson goes down with a career-ending injury? He's a running back. Guys are going to be sliding all over the place. You never know. It could cost you in a bunch of different ways."

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7 Comments

Actually, TCF Bank stadium is a pretty nice field, I was happy when they built it, real football is played outside. I see where Briggs is coming from, but at the end of the day, you got to suck it up and play where they tell you to play. I had to laugh to myself when I heard a player say "the NFL is a dictatorship," its like c'mon, show me a job that isn't? In the end we all work for the man. The Bears need to play it and win, they have a chance to sweep the division and make a pretty good play-off run.

My hope is this was't all staged so the Vikings can be moved to LA, LA doesn't need a team for petes sake. California already has 3 teams. The NFL needs to keep these teams out here in the mid-west. Again, I hope this wasn't staged for a possible excuse to move the Vikes to LA. If it was staged to simply justify building a new stadium...thats cool. Hopefully they build one with an extractable roof much like the one in Arizona GO BEARS!!

It's field Turf. No matter what they do at -20 the ground will be frozen heaters or no heaters. They are putting above ground heaters and a tarp over the surface of the field at this moment, the field will be as good as any field in that kind of weather.

As for the Bears players.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwAXcR6wRuQ

I honestly don't know what happened to the football teams that I grew up watching. Players from both the Bears and the Vikings have been whining all week about having to do something that NFL teams have been doing for 86 years. I have to believe that if there were anything unusually hard or unusually slippery about the TCF Bank field, the league would not have approved the site. I think that a lot of these guys are just unhappy that they don't get to play in a nice, warm dome. Well, too bad! A lot of us who grew up watching the Vikings at the Met are going to love this game. Sadly, one of the few Vikings who seems to have a good attitude about this is Greg Camarillo, a former Dolphin for goodness sakes. Anyway, if anyone wants to read a funny story about Brett Favre, go to www.newspile.weebly.com.

It's funny how the Chicago players are complaining about safety. The Minnesota players are excited to play at the stadium.

I don't think anyone is excited to be playing on frozen concrete. Get a clue, kiddo.

The players arguing against this stadium have a solid point when they point to hypocrisy on the part of the powers that be. Ordinarily little would have been said about the move and the frozen turf if the big news this year was not concussions and big fines for big hits. I certainly think far better safety considerations have long been overdue, but a degree of consistency from those pointing out the need is definitely needed.A fine American poet once pointed out that " corruption has never been compulsory," but in big -money professional sports, the dollars speak the loudest.

You sir, are an idiot!

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on December 17, 2010 2:04 PM.

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