Vikings switch sidelines at temporary home

MINNEAPOLIS -- Fans who were expecting to sit behind the Minnesota Vikings' bench on the south sideline at TCF Bank Stadium this fall won't be doing that after all.

The Vikings made the decision to switch from the south to the north sideline at their temporary home on the University of Minnesota campus, as they move outdoors for the first time in 33 years. General manager Rick Spielman and coach Mike Zimmer had made several trips to the stadium to make preparations for the 2014 season, and the Vikings realized the north sideline will afford them more time in the warmth of the sunshine late this season, when the sun sets by 5 p.m. in Minnesota and heat is at a premium.

The press box is in the southeast corner of the stadium, and there is club seating on the south side, which means the south sideline is in the shadows during late-season games. The Vikings will return to the south sideline when their new indoor stadium opens in 2016, so fans who bought tickets expecting to sit behind the bench in the new stadium won't see any change to their plans.

For now, though, the Vikings are trying to get a handle on outdoor home games for the first time since 1981, and they're hoping to gain a slight edge from the switch.