The first chance the Vikings will have to establish home-field advantage will be this fall, but the team and its future home, U.S. Bank Stadium, has a field — and a Norseman logo, purple end zones with white "Vikings" lettering and yard-line numbers in "Skol" font (same as the Vikings jerseys) — in progress.
Crews this week began an installation of synthetic turf that is projected to take three to four weeks.
The Vikings will have their first preseason game at noon on Aug. 28 when they host the Chargers and their first regular season game when the rival Packers renew the Border Battle Sept. 18 on NBC's Sunday Night Football.
Sizeable span: The field covering is 3.03 acres (132,000 sq. ft.) of UBU Sports' Speed Series S5-M synthetic turf at the venue that is scheduled for completion in July.
Stretched out: The playing surface is composed of more than 135 million blades of synthetic turf and more than 5,000 miles of Harmony fiber that weigh 46,000-plus pounds. The fiber could be stretched from Minneapolis to Moritz Boehringer's hometown of Aalen, Germany with plenty to spare.
View aerial images updated from both the northeast corner and then the southwest corner, showcasing the progress at U.S. Bank Stadium. Updated from late June of 2016.
Super Surface: The Mercedes-Benz Superdome, which hosted Super Bowl XLVIII, and MetLife Stadium, the site of Super Bowl XLIX, feature surfaces made by UBU Sports. Denver, the winner of Super Bowl 50, practices on a UBU Sports surface, becoming the 12th team to play or practice on a UBU Sports surface and make the title game since the turn of the century.
Fifth team, fourth venue: The Vikings are the fifth NFL team that will play home games on this surface, and U.S. Bank Stadium will be the fourth venue in the league to feature it, joining MetLife Stadium (New York Giants and New York Jets), the Mercedes-Benz Superdome (New Orleans Saints) and Paul Brown Stadium (Cincinnati Bengals).
Practice partner:The surface at U.S. Bank Stadium will be the same as the turf inside the Winter Park Fieldhouse. In addition to the Vikings (during their inside practices), other teams—Broncos, Saints, Texans, Cardinals, 49ers, Steelers and Bears practice on this turf.
Interchangeable parts:The areas that distinguish the turf as the home of the Vikings — particularly the Norseman and purple end zones — are in a "removable active panel (RAP) system that can be replaced by green segments when U.S. Bank Stadium hosts other events. The turf features UBU-4K coloration and is designed to ease conversion between events.
"Today's stadiums require the versatility to host a dynamic number of events" said UBU Sports CEO Mark Nicholls. "The UBU RAP System is the professional solution for stadiums to accomplish their event conversion demands."
Paint by numbers: The numbers that mark the yard lines are not part of the removable system but can be painted green.
On a roll: The expanse of turf was delivered on 163 total rolls, including 66 RAP panels. The total number of panels includes areas for home plate and extensions for baseball games, and extensions for soccer matches.
Closeness to sidelines: The turf will be snugly bordered by telescopic seats and suites, placing fans as close to the field as possible in any NFL venue. Seats are 41 feet from the sideline, and suites are 25 feet from the action.