Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.

Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.

Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.

Metrodome's turf gets low marks

Posted by: under Vikings, NFC Updated: February 3, 2011 - 6:12 PM

The Metrodome just can't win.

As if it wasn't bad enough the stadium's roof collapsed in December, now NFL players are expressing their dismay with the playing field as well.

In the biennial survey of NFL Stadiums conducted by the players' association, Mall of America Field at the Metrodome was ranked as the worst artificial playing field in the league. Rich Stadium in Buffalo was No. 2 and the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis was No. 3 on a list that includes 13 stadiums.

The survey is somewhat confusing because the NFLPA did separate rankings for best and worst playing fields when it came to natural grass and turf. The best turf field was Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. However, in that case the Metrodome was ranked second-to-last, ahead of Rich Stadium.

The Vikings, of course, aren't even 100 percent certain they will be playing their home games in that building next season. The team definitely will play its 2011 home schedule in Minnesota, but the wait continues for what will be done when it comes to the Dome's roof.

In fairness to the folks who run Mall of America Field, the Metrodome, or whatever you want to call it, this vote was done after only six teams (seven including the Vikings) played in the building this season on the new Sportexe turf that was installed last summer. Other players who voted did so with the memory of playing on the FieldTurf that used to be in the building.




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