Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Don Smolenski conducted a conference call on Saturday afternoon to provide an update on the snow removal in and around Lincoln Financial Field in preparation of Sunday's game with the 49ers, which will now begin at 4:15 PM. According to Smolenski, over 1,000 workers are at the stadium to get everything ready for the game.
"We're going to do what we can to make it the best it can be. Regardless of the expense, we're going to do whatever it takes to get the stadium and the field ready for the teams," Smolenski said.
The parking lots will open at Noon. The stadium gates will open at 3 PM. The Eagles are encouraging fans to utilize public transportation because there will be a reduced number of parking spaces available.
"Hopefully with the game time change in moving it back a few hours is really an opportunity for all of us - the City, highway operators, the teams and the parking lot operators get areas as clear as possible to hopefully have as many spaces as possible," Smolenski said. "But I think it's safe to say, given the volume of the snow, there will be a reduced number of spaces available."
Smolenski urged fans not to arrive at the Sports Complex until Noon on Sunday. There may not be as much time for tailgating as on a normal gameday, but this will give "everybody more time to clear the area both locally and around the region."
In addition to the time changes, activities in the Headhouse Plaza will be curtailed due to the storm. The heavy snow is expected to continue until midnight and any remaining flurries will be out of the area by sunrise, according to Smolenski.
As for the field conditions, Director of Grounds Tony Leonard and his crew placed tarps over the field on Friday. The snow has been plowed off the tarps after a couple of inches accumulate. Smolenski said that the field "should be in decent shape under the conditions."
The 49ers arrived in Philadelphia on Friday and there were no changes to either team's schedule on Saturday. The Eagles conducted a walkthrough on Saturday morning before reporting to the team hotel.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 2:20 p.m., December 19