U.S. Bank Stadium must follow rules for retractable roofs


U.S. Bank Stadium may be the future home of the Minnesota Vikings, but it will still need to follow the NFL’s rules regarding retractable roofs and walls.

The Minnesota Vikings put a lot of planning into U.S. Bank Stadium and added many fantastic features to the facility. One of those features is the ability to open the side wall of the stadium as if it were a series of doors to allow fresh air to flow freely.

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However, don’t think that the Minnesota Vikings will be able to open these doors at any time during the game. According to a post on WCCO Minneapolis’ website, the doors will need to follow the same rules that are in place for stadiums with retractable roofs in order to ensure they aren’t being used to obtain an unfair advantage.

For example, opening the doors during an opposing team’s field goal attempt or to gain distance on kickoffs could be achieved using this technique, but thanks to the rules in place, a situation like that won’t be happening in U.S. Bank Stadium.

For this reason, the team will have to make the decision 90 minutes before kickoff as to whether the doors for the facility will be open or closed for the duration of the game, much like the Cardinals, Colts, Cowboys and Texans must do for their retractable roofs at their home stadiums.

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This doesn’t sound like it is a problem for the Minnesota Vikings or the team’s executive vice president of public affairs and stadium development, Lester Bagley.

"“Our position at this time is that we will abide by NFL policy,” Bagley told WCCO in an email."

Of course, being the first stadium in the league with walls that open like doors could make the team push for different rules to be implemented for U.S. Bank Stadium, but for the time being, the current rules for retractable roof stadiums must be applied.

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This means that the team will have to do some testing to find out just how much impact having the doors open for games will have on the field before the NFL preseason arrives. The Minnesota Vikings will have to gauge weather conditions, such as wind speed and direction as well as any rain, snow, sleet or hail that may fall that day.