It’s February 4, 2024. Patrick Mahomes has led the Chiefs to a fifth straight Super Bowl, facing Tampa Bay and 47-year-old quarterback Tom Brady.
Because aside from the fact that cockroaches can live headless for weeks, the only certainty in life could be that Brady will play forever.
And on that day the NFL celebrates Super Bowl LVIII, he got to do so with Wayne Newton and Elvis as part of the halftime show.
The league is expected to announce a home for its 2024 game in the next few months after moving the Super Bowl, which was awarded to New Orleans this year, to 2025.
Las Vegas and Allegiant Stadium aren’t just an option for 2024.
It’s the most logical place.
Open to business
What happened: The NFL’s expanded 17-game regular season schedule is set to begin next season, which would have meant the Super Bowl would have clashed with New Orleans Mardi Gras 2024.
I know people can party on Bourbon Street in a way that doesn’t concern anyone, but even the famous Mississippi city might have trouble hosting two such massive events at the same time. I mean, how many lobsters are there really?
Las Vegas – along with the Raiders – has cleverly offered to host the 2024 Super Bowl, an obvious step for a city that already seems firmly on the positive side of the ledger in the eyes of NFL owners.
Gosh, how times have changed
What better way there is for Las Vegas to tell the world that in a post-pandemic existence it is indeed open to all business again than to host the most colossal and famous sporting events? What better way to drive recovery and growth?
Here’s the thing: hosting a Super Bowl doesn’t come close to the economic impact of the NFL, and local authorities want you to believe in it. A city is more likely than not to lose money for the business and is hiding your wallet as a taxpayer.
However, it’s impossible to quantify the global reach and exposure you get as a Super Bowl city. As much as Las Vegas is known as one of the most hospitable hosts in the world, it has hardly escaped the financial disasters of COVID-19.
For once you need a Super Bowl instead of just wanting one.
They would hope that the planet was adequately vaccinated well before 2024 and that the coronavirus is more historic than the daily reality. Hosting the Super Bowl would signal that Las Vegas is out of the pandemic and is back as a port of call for major events both now and in the future.
The 2022 NFL draft will take place in Las Vegas, an event that was scheduled here last April but was virtual due to the pandemic. The city will also host the Pro Bowl next year, along with nine NCAA championship events beginning in the 2022-23 academic year.
Huge sporting moments are on the way.
Process has changed
“Las Vegas was built for these types of events, and only Vegas can have the venues, hotels, amenities and transportation within just a few miles,” said Steve Hill, CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority about explanation. “A Super Bowl would bring a level of energy, excitement, and a spotlight to Las Vegas that no other event can match – all intangible but also very real.”
Las Vegas will eventually land a Super Bowl. It’s part of the deal when you build another major stadium for the NFL, worth a few billion dollars.
While the selection process to secure the game has changed – the league is now headed straight to a desired city rather than competing for the hosting right – it has become apparent that the majority of NFL owners
Find southern Nevada a useful destination for its major events.
So it is not a time like 2024.
By then, Brady might just be getting started.
Ed Graney is a Sigma Delta Chi Award winner for sports column writing and can be reached at [email protected] or 702-383-4618. It can be heard Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to 10:00 am on “The Press Box”, ESPN Radio 100.9 FM and 11:00 am. Follow @edgraney on Twitter.