Edwards Jones Dome is the home of the St. Louis Rams, which started out as the Cleveland Rams in 1936 before moving to Los Angeles in 1946 and shifting operations to Anaheim in 1979. In 1995, the Rams moved to St. Louis and have played at this facility ever since.
Ground broke for the Edward Jones Dome on July 13th, 1992, opening more than three years later on November 12th, 1995. The total cost of construction was $280 million, with the bonds that secured initial funding still requiring repayment until 2021. Nonetheless, the age and quality of the stadium has become an issue, especially considering a deal that allows the team to relocate and enjoy a year-to-year lease if the dome isn’t considered one of the top stadiums in the league.
Unfortunately, a 2012 article in Time Magazine listed Edwards Jones Dome as the seventh worst sports facility in the United States. In 2008, Sports Illustrated revealed that St. Louis fans considered the dome to be the worst NFL stadium in the league. Both of these has contributed to a series of negotiations as St. Louis and the owners of the Rams attempt to hammer out a new deal for massive renovations or a brand new stadium, lest the Rams once again relocate to another city.
St. Louis Rams Stadium
The Rams haven’t appeared in the playoffs since 2004, which hints at the lack of a quality squad fielded by St. Louis. Accordingly, their home record has been less than impressive over the past half-decade, with the team suffering through a sub-500 record of 18-22 since 2010. However, their performance away from the dome is much worse over the same period of time, with a winning percentage of .275 thanks to a 11-28-1 record.
The 2008 NFLPA survey of playing fields listed the Edward Jones Dome as the fourth worst artificial playing field in the league after they decided to install FieldTurf in 2005. Five years later, when they switched to their current surface, AstroTurf GameDay Grass 3D, the 2010 NFLPA playing surface survey ranked the field third worst in the league, suggesting that no one really likes to watch or play football at this venue.
Date Opened: November 12, 1995
Construction Cost: $280 million
Architect: Populous; Kennedy Associates/Architects, Inc.
Capacity Attendance: 66,000
Playing Surface: AstroTurf GameDay Grass 3D
Previous St. Louis Rams Stadiums
Cleveland Municipal Stadium; League Park; Shaw Stadium; Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum; Anaheim Stadium; Busch Memorial Stadium
Other Major Events
The Rams won both the 1999 and the 2001 NFC championship at Edward Jones Dome. The 1999 team ended up taking it all, winning Super Bowl XXXIV by beating the Tennessee Titans by a touchdown. This Super Bowl featured one of the closest finishes in history, as the Titans came within inches tying it up on the last play as time expired.
March Madness arrived in St. Louis for the 2005 edition of the tournament, with the final four being held at the dome. Michigan State, Louisville, North Carolina and Illinois were the last teams standing, with North Carolina eventually winning the tournament by defeating Illinois in the championship game.