The NFL announced the sites for the 2019, 2020 and 2021 Super Bowls on Tuesday, and Atlanta was awared the first of those, which will host Super Bowl LIII in its new $1.4 bilion stadium.
Unlike Miami and Los Angeles, which got Super Bowls LIV and LV respectively, Atlanta was almost immediately forced to defend the selection because one unnamed NFL owner raised a pressing question before Atlanta got the bid: What if an ice storm or blizzard hit and totally ruined everything?
"I reminded him that was 16 years ago and the weather in Atlanta, due to climate changes, it's changed," Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank said. "So, it's beautiful now. We don't think that will be an issue. I understand that was 1-in-100-years kind of freak stuff."
More from FoxSports
In fairness to the paranoid unnamed owner, that happened the last time Atlanta got the Super Bowl (2000), but it was also a freak weather event and not an annual occurrence. Detroit, Indianapolis and New Jersey/New York -- locales that have hosted Super Bowls since Atlanta in 2000 -- all have worse winter weather than Atlanta, and things went off just fine.
Falcons president Rich McKay said this in response to the "ice storm" concern:
"That was a long time ago. I think when you look at our average temperatures and when you look at the weather response that the city and the state have put together not just for the Super Bowl but for all of us that live in Atlanta, I just don't see it as a big issue. That was a once-in-50-years storm.
"We have a retractable roof stadium that is built to host these type of events and to deal with weather. Sometimes, the weather is going to impact the way we move around the city. In our case, it doesn't happen very often. So if it happens two times in the last so many years, I don't think it's a deciding factor."
Blank noted that what Atlanta has going for it that other cities up for Super Bowl bids did not is it's walkability around downtown, which was a major selling point for the other NFL owners.
"I spoke to every owner short of one -- myself," Blank said. "They all thought [the walkability] was a major plus for Atlanta. Everything was within a quarter-, half-mile: hotel rooms, all the amenities. So if the weather is not perfect, [fans] can move around and move around efficiently."