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Jerry Jones: New Atlanta stadium has Super Bowl written all over it
Jan 28, 2016
ESPN Staff Writer
MOBILE, Ala. -- If Falcons owner Arthur Blank and the city of Atlanta are ready to make their Super Bowl pitch for the 2019 season, they certainly have the backing of Jerry Jones.
The Dallas Cowboys owner gushed about Blank and the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which is expected to open in 2017 despite a recent setback in the construction timeline. Blank previously announced intentions to bid on the next available Super Bowl, which is Super Bowl 53 during the '19 season. The NFL events staff already visited Atlanta and the $1.4 billion venue multiple times.
Jones acknowledged the strong chance of Atlanta securing the '19 bid.
"Well, that stadium has Super Bowl written all over it," Jones told ESPN.com following practice at the Senior Bowl. "It is nothing short of magnificent, and I'm not exaggerating. With the entire franchise, (Blank) has put his heart and soul into it. He'll do anything to win. And he hasn't spared the rod on that stadium. He has, just every step of the way, expanded the scope of it by making it just as good as good can be.
"I'm very proud to have him as an owner in the league. And I'm very proud of that stadium not only for the Atlanta fans, the Falcons fans, but also for the league. It's going to be one of our great assets. It's certainly going to be a great place to play a Super Bowl."
Tampa, Miami and New Orleans also are in the mix for Super Bowl 53, but many anticipate Atlanta will be rewarded for the construction of a new stadium. Minneapolis, which is set to open a new stadium next season, was awarded Super Bowl 52.
The year after Jones' "Jerry World" Cowboys Stadium opened in 2009, Super Bowl 45 was held there the very next season. (It is now called AT&T Stadium.).
"We generally, if you look -- it's not written policy because each one has to be voted on by the owners -- but it has a very obvious logic that the owners usually follow that if you make that type of commitment, you should be able to have a Super Bowl," Jones said. "Of course Atlanta is a great place, a great city to have a Super Bowl."
The '19 bid will be announced during the NFL spring league meeting, to be held in Charlotte on May 23-25. If Atlanta does not win, it is eligible to bid for Super Bowl 54. However, the bidding should be even more competitive by then with Los Angeles and a new stadium also eligible to bid for the 2020 season. Los Angeles' eligibility was based on a new team playing in the city by 2018, and the Rams are relocating to L.A. for next season.
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