Arrowhead Stadium has been the home of the Kansas City Chiefs for quite a long time, and they possess one of the finest homefield advantages in all of sports. Football fans are aware of what Arrowhead offers that other stadiums do not, and this article explains what makes Arrowhead special. There are four major factors to consider, and each plays into the overwhelming presence created by a vintage NFL stadium.
#1: The Temperature
Everyone who watches football has seen a sideline reporter at a thermometer on the sideline showing over 100 degrees on the field. The early part of the season is extremely hot because the sun is beating down in August and September. The stadium stays that way for much of the season, but the winter in Kansas City will take over eventually.
Winter in Kansas City is difficult to adjust to because no one expects it to snow. It is cold and windy in the winter, and it will snow if given the chance. Someone who played in the stadium early in the season will be surprised by snow on the ground, rain and high winds. Teams coming to the stadium never get adjusted to the weather, and the Chiefs live in the city. They have ample opportunity to adjust.
#2: The Fans
Chiefs fans are some of the loudest in the league, and they have been rabid since the 60s. They do not let up because there is little else in the city to distract them. Kansas City is not a college football town, and their baseball team is rarely competitive. Kansas City sports fans will gravitate to the Chiefs in every instance, and they sell out games every week.
#3: The Noise
The stadium is of the old period in the NFL where stadiums were made from concrete and metal. There is nothing to buffer the sound in the stadium, and loud fans may be heard in every part of the stadium. The sound is so loud that teams often have to move to a hand signal offense because they cannot hear. Visiting teams waste their timeouts, and the home team may run their traditional offense because they are not turned off by the crowd noise.
#4: The Sun
The sun hits the stadium at a sharp angle that makes playing on one end of the field extremely-difficult in the middle of the day. Visiting teams have a hard time seeing anything because they are not in the city every day, and they lose time calling plays or recovering when the sun is in their eyes.
#5: The Wind
Kickers in Kansas City are prepared to kick with the winds cutting through the stadium. It was not built with modern technology to avoid winds moving the ball around, and the kickers who visit the stadium are apt to miss extra points and field goals. Extra practice is required, and that is no guarantee the ball will pass through the uprights. Players are constantly concerned about the wind, and they lose their focus as they deal with the weather.
Kansas City is not the only city in the NFL with a fine stadium, but they have created a homefield advantage that is quite powerful. The team will garner more wins at home every season than the majority of the league, and they will continue to enjoy that advantage as they play at Arrowhead. There are no plans to change the stadium because it is such a unique relic of the old days in the AFL. Everyone may build a new stadium, but it appears Arrowhead will remain.