Titans switch to new synthetic turf at Nissan Stadium

January 31, 2023 GMT
A stadium view of Tennessee Titans' Nissan Stadium as fans begin to arrive before an NFL football game against the ,Jacksonville Jaguars, Dec. 11, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans are tearing up the grass and replacing the field with a synthetic surface before the 2023 season. The Titans announced the change Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2023. (AP Photo/Peter Joneleit)
A stadium view of Tennessee Titans' Nissan Stadium as fans begin to arrive before an NFL football game against the ,Jacksonville Jaguars, Dec. 11, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans are tearing up the grass and replacing the field with a synthetic surface before the 2023 season. The Titans announced the change Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2023. (AP Photo/Peter Joneleit)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Titans are tearing up the grass field at Nissan Stadium and replacing it with a synthetic surface before the 2023 season.

The Titans announced the change Tuesday. The team, which already has started work, is making the change after reviewing injury rates and knowing how difficult it is to grow grass at Nissan Stadium since it opened in 1999.

“Ultimately there’s just a limit to how much can be done for a natural grass surface in this part of the country,” said Burke Nihill, the team president and CEO. “This turf is cutting-edge technology and will be a huge improvement in terms of consistency and performance.”

The Titans have led the NFL in each of the past two seasons for most players used, including setting a league record with 91 players in 2021 — most in a non-strike season — because of injuries.

The franchise also learned from the NFL that games at Nissan Stadium have had players suffer more lower-body injuries than games at the league’s other stadiums with monofilament, synthetic turf fields over the past few seasons and also was among the league leaders for games with players with lower-body injuries.

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Nissan Stadium will be the NFL’s first to use the technology featuring a monofilament, Matrix Helix turf with an organic infill that retains moisture better than synthetic fields using rubber. The Titans installed the surface at their indoor practice field last year.

Coach Mike Vrabel said he noticed the grass becoming slick even when replaced with new sod, causing players to slip. Vrabel said players responded favorably to the new indoor surface.

“Just witnessing our practices inside and how they feel and how they respond on that product,” Vrabel said. “We’re excited to be able to add this product to our stadium.”

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