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May 10, 2012 10:12 PM

Graff: Fans Benefit From Vikings Stadium Deal

Sioux Falls, SD

The Minnesota Vikings are moving out of the Metrodome. The Minnesota Senate put its stamp of approval on a bill that would put a new stadium near the Metrodome in Downtown Minneapolis.

The Metrodome opened in 1982. Fans say it's out-dated and hope the Vikes will benefit from a new home just like the Twins did when Target Field opened.

"The condition of the field, the condition of the locker rooms [are bad]. When you get a new environment, it just invigorates everybody involved with the team but especially the players," former NFL quarterback Neil Graff said.

The Vikings drafted Graff in the 1970s. While a new field could motivate the team to victory, he says fans are the real winners. 

"It allows everything to move forward and helps solidify them in terms of staying in Minnesota. I think that's the big thing," Graff said.

"Maybe people will be willing to come to Minnesota. No one likes playing in the Metrodome so maybe the new stadium will get some attraction from free agents." Vikings fan Adam Blackwelder said.

A new stadium will also pull plenty of Vikings fans such as Blackwelder. New stadiums have amenities that weren't even a concept 30 years ago.

"You go to other stadiums and you go to the Metrodome and it's bad. They could use an upgrade," Blackwelder said.

Under the agreed terms, Minnesota will pay $350 million, Minneapolis will chip in another $150 million leaving the Vikings to pick up the tab for the rest of more than $900 million building.

The price tag guarantees fans all over the region a home team to cheer on for more than three decades.

"It means I'll actually go up there more now. I know probably at least once a year," fan Nate Lindgren said.

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton has yet to sign the bill. He has said all along he supports the plan.

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