Yesterday, reports surfaced that South Florida had been named a finalist for Super Bowl L, giving the Miami Dolphins their first chance to host the game since 2010. The 50th game will be held in February 2016, and is a milestone game that had been desired by multiple cities.
In yesterday's reports, it was thought that New Orleans' Superdome, which will host the 2013 game, was the other finalist against the Miami area. As of Super Bowl XVLII, to be played February 3 of next year, New Orleans will tie Miami as the city to host the most Super Bowls, with 10 each.
However, it's now become apparent that New Orleans is not in the running for Super Bowl L, instead the city is working to land Super Bowl LII in 2018, which will mark the 300th anniversary of the founding of New Orleans.
South Florida will actually be against the San Francisco 49ers new stadium in Santa Clara, California. The NFL has made a habit lately of awarding Super Bowls to new stadiums, including 2012's Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapols' Lucas Oil Stadium and the upcoming 2014 game at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. That could give Sant Clara the edge on Miami.
However, it is also thought the NFL could be looking to host the milestone 50th game in a city with Super Bowl tradition, as well as keep the game in a warm weather climate after the New Jersey game. The average temperature in Santa Clara at the beginning of February ranges from 45 degrees to 60 degrees, while in Miami the temperature range is between 61 degrees and 77.
The NFL could also use the awarding of Super Bowl L as a way to try to leverage the city of Miami, Miami-Dade County and the State of Florida governments into assisting the Dolphins in funding renovations to Sun Life Stadium. The NFL and the Dolphins have been looking for ways to upgrade the stadium, originally named Joe Robbie Stadium when it opened in 1987, including adding a cover over the stands to prevent rain and the heat from making game attendance unpopular for fans. The Dolphins are also thought to be looking to move the lower bowl seats closer to the field now that the Major League Baseball Miami Marlins are no longer using the field.
The announcement of the Super Bowl L host will most likely be made during the league's spring meetings. Whichever of the two finalists is not awarded the 2016 game will compete against Houston for Super Bowl LI in 2017, according to reports.