EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Arriving early for "Monday Night Football" allowed for a quick self-tour around the MetLife Stadium grounds.
A few first impressions:
The New York Giants' offices and practice facility are here as well, with a security gate controlling vehicle access to the parking lot. A large plasma TV showing NFL Network greets visitors to the bright lobby with vaulted ceiling and abundant natural light (what is this, Better Homes and Gardens?). You can read more about the offices and practice facility here.
The stadium has a modern look from the outside, but it's the inside that is truly spectacular, instantly making this look like one of the best places in the NFL to watch a game. Back into BHG mode: The sunshine on this Monday adds vibrance to the white-on-blue end zones and FieldTurf surface speckled with black rubber infill.
The light brown and metallic gray seats framing the field are understated. They also seem close to the field. Visitors probably feel more surrounded here than at stadiums with fewer seats or more distance between field and upper decks. I don't know how the measurements compare to those of other stadiums, but that is the feeling.
Each corner of the stadium features a large videoboard on the suite level sandwiched between the upper deck and second levels. These screens do not even attempt to compare with the massive screen distinguishing Jerry Jones' stadium in Dallas, but they fit well with the open-air stadium.
The MetLife signage knows its place and doesn't intrude like an unwanted solicitor. I'm noticing blue-lettered signage attached to the upper-deck facade above each end zone, and additional digital display on the video scoreboard ring around the stadium.
The lettering honoring Andy Robustelli, Joe Morrison, Y.A. Tittle and other Giants greats is on the small side, with first names in even smaller type and stacked above last names. It's tough to see the "Amani" above the "Toomer" across the field, but if you have to ask what it says above Toomer's name, it's time to brush up on your NFL fan credentials, anyway.
I've hit my limit for first impressions. Better back off before someone assigns me to the new stadium minutiae blog.