The Super Bowl is coming back to Arizona.
NFL owners voted Wednesday at their meeting in Atlanta to hold Super Bowl LVII – the 57th game, held after the 2022 season -- at University of Phoenix Stadium. Commissioner Roger Goodell said the vote was unanimous.
"We are thrilled by the unanimous vote," Cardinals team president Michael Bidwill said in a press conference in Atlanta. "We look forward to making this the most fan-friendly Super Bowl in the history of Super Bowls, and bigger and better than any Super Bowl."
It will be the third time the Super Bowl has been held in the building and the fourth time in Arizona. Super Bowl XXX was held at Sun Devil Stadium following the 1995 season.
In a press conference later Wednesday at Paradise Valley's Sanctuary Resort, Bidwill said the NFL asked for three times the event space for Super Bowl LVII than it did for Super Bowl XLIX, the last game played in Arizona.
"It'll be much bigger," Bidwill said.
The Cardinals will also have completed $100 million in upgrades to University of Phoenix Stadium – upgrades that began two years ago – by the time the game is played.
The NFL has changed the way it awards Super Bowls. In their previous bids, Arizona's Super Bowl committee created a presentation and competed with other cities before the owners would vote. Now, the NFL asks one city if it would want and is prepared to host a Super Bowl. If accepted, owners then vote on that city.
"They changed the process, but we didn't rest on our laurels," Bidwill said. "We did not take this for granted. We knew it was invitation-only (for one city), but we still put our best foot forward."
New Orleans also was chosen for a Super Bowl, for the 2023 season.
"It really is a remarkable opportunity for our community for us to be able to host the game again," said Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee chairman David Rousseau.
The next four Super Bowls had already been set. Super Bowl LIII, after this season, is in Atlanta. Super Bowl LIV, after 2019, is in Miami. Super Bowl LV, after 2020, is in Tampa. Super Bowl LVI, after 2021, will be in the new stadium in Los Angeles.
"I just want to make sure Super Bowl 57 is a home game for the Cardinals," Bidwill said with a smile during an interview with NFL Network. "That's my goal."
The previous two Super Bowls at University of Phoenix Stadium have provided dramatic finishes.
After the 2007 season, the New England Patriots were attempting to go 19-0 on the season, only to have David Tyree's helmet-pinning catch and Plaxico Burress' touchdown catch from Eli Manning late in the game close out a 17-14 win for the New York Giants.
After the 2014 season, the Seattle Seahawks trailed by four at the Patriots' 1-yard line with less than a minute left, but the comeback was derailed when cornerback Malcom Butler jumped a route to intercept Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson for a 28-24 win.
The new process may make it more difficult for Arizona to get bids, but Bidwill said the effort will continue to be made to get future Super Bowls.
"This is fantastic news for the state of Arizona," Governor Doug Ducey said. "We couldn't be happier to do this. This is a tremendous economic impact for the state."