The popped Metrodome roof
The Minnesota Vikings' home field, the Metrodome, had a slight problem Sunday. The roof of the domed stadium collapsed underneath the pressure of the huge snowstorms that hit the Twin Cities, forcing the NFL to move the planned Vikings/Giants kickoff from noon in Minneapolis to Monday night in Detroit.
This makes the Bears' planned trip to Minneapolis next week a little more interesting. The Metrodome's roof is basically a large garbage bag that is held up by compressed air that is pumped into the stadium. That makes it easier to fix than a typical roof, but there is no guarantee the old stadium that Mike Ditka once mocked as the Roller Dome will be ready for Monday night kickoff against the Bears.
Where else can they play?
-- Indianapolis, Detroit or St. Louis: A game that was scheduled to be played under a dome should be played under a dome. It doesn't matter that domes are the province of the soft teams; what's fair is fair. Indianapolis, Detroit or St. Louis could provide a Midwestern, domed home to the game, meaning that fans who had tickets could possibly get to the game. St. Louis would be the shortest drive for Minny fans, but it's still nine hours away. For a domed stadium that's less than a four-drive away, the NFL could turn to ...
-- Cedar Falls, Iowa: Seriously. Stick with us, here. Cedar Falls is the home to the University of Northern Iowa and the UNI-Dome, a 16,000-seat domed football stadium. It is a three and a half hour drive from Minneapolis, not an out-of-question drive for Minnesota ticket holders who are already screwed out of a home game this week. (They were given refunds, but still.)
-- Los Angeles: With rumors flying that Vikings owner Zygi Wilf wants to move his team to the largest city without an NFL team, why not test out the Vikings' popularity in La-La Land and play the game at the Rose Bowl? Another Minnesota team who moved to southern California did quite well.
We don't want to see that last scenario happen, both because the Bears would never want to lose the Vikings as a division rival and that Wilf and the Vikings should not be rewarded for letting the Metrodome fall into this shape in the first place. It doesn't take an advanced degree in meteorology to predict heavy snowfall in Minnesota.