There are many NFL stadiums where it’s difficult to play. Whether it’s the weather, the fans, the noise, or other elements (i.e. altitude), an away game is not for the faint of heart.
Some of the most difficult stadiums to play in that stand out to me are Heinz Field (Steelers), Arrowhead (Chiefs), Solider Field (Bears), McAfee Coliseum (Raiders), and Lincoln Financial Field (Eagles).
Yesterday, Josh McDaniels was asked what three stadiums are, in his opinion, the most difficult to play in.
First he mentioned Arrowhead.
“I would definitely put Arrowhead in that class, in the top [three], because for an outdoor stadium, the noise makes it hard to function, particularly on offense,” McDaniels said. “You’re certainly going to use the silent count…That gives them a big advantage.”
Next, McDaniels spoke about the RCA Dome in Indianapolis. The Colts played there from 1984-2007 before they moved into Lucas Oil Stadium. Rightfully nicknamed Hoosier Dome, the stadium was intimate and noisy for the opposition just like the gym was in the basketball movie, Hoosiers.
“I always thought that the old Indianapolis stadium because it was right on top of you and the noise kind of bounced off the walls. That was a very difficult place to hear, and then there was a hush when they had the ball. You could hear him [Peyton Manning] whisper.”
McDaniels’ third choice was the Meadowlands in New Jersey, home to both the Giants and the Jets. McDaniels obviously played the Jets more than the Giants while he was with New England, so he knows that stadium quite well. The new Meadowlands basically sits in the same place as the original Meadowlands so the crowd hasn’t changed much.
“The Meadowlands was always a different crowd between the Jets and the Giants. I enjoyed playing there. You felt like you were on a stage, but at the same time, the crowd was very hostile,” McDaniels said.
While there’s no place like home, there’s no feeling like winning in a hostile stadium.
Silence from the crowd turns out to be the best sound in the world.
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