It was reported on Monday that the Kraft-Heinz corporation will no longer be paying for the right to call Heinz Field Heinz Field starting in 2022, which means Heinz Field will have to be called something else effective immediately: Acrisure Stadium.
Yes, it’s the end of the world as we know it—or not. Believe it or not, people on social media, the Steelers, despite their “ways,” aren’t above changing the name of their football stadium to reflect the title of whatever cooperation agrees to pay them millions of dollars per year for the rights--even if that company is based in Michigan.
Honestly, I wish they would have struck a deal with Hunt’s and called it Hunt's Field. I wanted them to rip the Heinz labels off of those huge ketchup bottles at The Pittsburgh Football Stadium (my hip name for it if I had my way) and replace them with giant Hunt’s labels. It would have been like the time Marian Hossa signed with the Red Wings but with ketchup. It would have brought me so much joy. I’m tired of the constant faux outrage expressed by people from Pittsburgh, as well as those not from here but who are just swimming in our wake, every time they’re at some airport and see a bottle of Hunt’s. “Look, guys, I’m having a pre-flight meal at the airport in Memphis (insert social media pic of a bottle of Hunt’s ketchup here). Can you believe they don’t have Heinz? Unacceptable.” Yes, I can totally believe it, because they probably don’t worship ketchup brands in Memphis (everyone knows they worship fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches). I mean, come on, ketchup has been around for like 2,000 years. You seriously think no other company has been able to put together the perfect combination of ingredients to make its version taste as good? How hard can it be? It’s freaking ketchup! In fact, I’m reading the label on the Giant Eagle brand bottle of ketchup I just took out of my fridge that’s located in Crafton, which is a suburb of Pittsburgh, and there are only like four ingredients.
Come to think of it, I wanted the Steelers to change the name of their stadium to Annie’s Organic Ketchup Vegan Food Court so you alpha males out there would have lost your minds and screamed about how we’ve gotten soft as a society.
Obviously, the chances of The Pittsburgh Football Stadium being named after a new ketchup were pretty slim, but had Hunt's ponied up the necessary cash to make it happen, the Steelers would have gladly accepted the offer.
It’s the way of the sports world in 2022. Mostly gone are the days of Three Rivers Stadium, Memorial Stadium, Riverfront Stadium, Veterans Stadium and Cleveland Stadium.
Heck, I can’t believe Soldier Field is still called Soldier Field in 2022 and not something like Ditka’s Soldier Field.
You’d think the past would have been more like the present in terms of naming rights. With owners of yesteryear being so pocket poor and desperate for cash, I’m surprised more teams didn’t name their venues after the companies who were willing to sign the biggest checks.
Today, with the TV contracts alone making every owner a billionaire, the Steelers could afford to name their venue The Chief’s Man Cave, and they’d still be quite profitable.
But maximizing every revenue stream is the reality for NFL owners in 2022, which is why we’ll never see a Renegade Ranch or Steel City Bowl.
Instead of whatever Acrisure is, I was assuming the new name would have had something to do with UPMC. Just think of the possibilities during those moments when the defense was really dominating. Triage Center? Perfect.
Finally, your attitude might be something along the lines of, “It will always be Heinz Field to me,” but you’re still talking about ketchup.
Not quite the same as Forbes Field, Three Rivers Stadium or the Civic Arena.