Over the last several years, more NFL teams have found that bigger and better is the way to go when it comes to videoboards. In many new or renovated stadium projects, there has been an emphasis on large, modern displays that incorporate the latest technology for the gameday experience.
Perhaps one of the major turning points in recent videoboard history came in 2009, when the Dallas Cowboys opened AT&T Stadium. A major feature at the stadium was its videoboard, a four-sided display that was suspended 90 feet over the playing field, and stretched from one 20-yard line to the other. The 600-ton structure included a main video board that was 72 feet tall by 160 feet wide—catching the attention of many both inside and outside of the NFL, including the Guinness Book of World Records, which awarded it World’s Largest High-Definition Video Display in September 2009.
For the hype it received, it did not take long for other facilities to catch up to the videoboard at AT&T Stadium. As part of a renovation that it received before the 2013 season, NRG Stadium—home of the Houston Texans—unveiled two end zone videoboards that measured at 52.5 feet high by 277 feet wide. One year later, the Jacksonville Jaguars upped the ante by adding new displays to EverBank Field that measured at 60 feet tall by 362 feet wide.
Other notable projects have followed, with teams seeking to install large videoboards as part of major renovations. Prior to last season, the New Orleans Saints unveiled displays at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome with dimensions of 333 feet wide by 38 feet high. Earlier this year, the Detroit Lions announced a major renovation to Ford Field that will lead to upgraded videoboards, while the Baltimore Ravens are also expected to enhance their end zone displays at M&T Bank Stadium before the 2017 season.
What should be the most intriguing addition to the videoboard landscape this year, however, is the display planned for Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The new home of the Atlanta Falcons is expected to feature several interesting technology features, including what has been touted as a first-of-its-kind “Halo” display.
The videoboard at Mercedes-Benz Stadium will span 360 degrees, and will be mounted above the playing field. According to figures from Daktronics, the Halo is going to measure at 58 feet tall by 1,075 feet long, and will have roughly 62,000 square feet of LED.
With its unique shape and immense size, the videoboard at Mercedes-Benz Stadium should attract a lot of attention when it operates for the first time later this year. It could also up the ante in what has become a very competitive technology landscape in the NFL.
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