NASHVILLE, Tenn. —From a distance, Titans fans will notice a difference when they approach Nissan Stadium for the season opener on Sunday.
As they get closer – and once inside – they'll see some major aesthetic improvements throughout the stadium, including a Nissan Hall of Greats honoring some of the team's best players. In addition, some new elements have been added to the pregame festivities on the stadium's grounds to enhance the fan experience on game days.
"We place a high priority on continuing to provide a first-class experience at Nissan Stadium,'' said Titans controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk. "We are constantly striving to improve our fans' enjoyment of gameday, and we hope these additions both inside and outside the facility add to their experience this year. We look forward to hosting our fans at Nissan Stadium for our season opener on Sunday."
The stadium includes all new seats as part of an offseason-long seat replacement project. The word "Titans" is spelled out in the blue seats, with white letters, on the east side of the stadium.
Among the other additions/improvements:
"Titan Up" Tailgate Party
A new free "Titan Up Tailgate Party" will take place outside the south side of the stadium, by gates 7-10, before each game and it will be open to fans three hours before kick-off.
The experience will include live bands and DJ on stage, appearances by T-RAC and Titans cheerleaders, free face painters, artists, and games, pre-game radio show live by Titans Radio and 104.5 The Zone, and plenty of fan interactive elements.
"It's designed to create a lot of fun and excitement and energy in the parking lot for game days,'' said Ralph Ockenfels, Vice President of Marketing and Broadcast & Digital Rights for the Titans. "It's a place Titans fans can come and get ready for game. It will be new, it will be fun. Titans fans will have a great time getting ready for game day."
Check out the new murals, featuring Titans greats - and other new additions in 2016 - at Nissan Stadium. (Photos: Gary Glenn)
Nissan Hall of Greats**
Giant wall graphics featuring 30 current and former Titans now appears throughout the main concourses at Nissan Stadium. Titans players since 1999 who were selected to NFL Pro Bowl, or named to All Pro, are features in the graphics. The players are also featured on 10 fan interactive touch screens on the main concourse located on each side of the field, by sections 109 and 138. Each player's key stats, biographical information, plus game photos and video archives are included. Future Titans named All Pro or selected to the Pro Bowl will also be added.
"Fans can walk up and touch a screen and learn all about the 30 great players in Titans history,'' Ockenfels said. "They'll see the iconic image of Steve McNair, Eddie George, Jevon Kearse, Frank Wycheck, Keith Bulluck and all the great players in Titans history."
Nissan's "Ride With a Titan"
The Nissan "Ride With a Titan" will be located inside gate 6 on game days. Fans will have a unique interactive fan experience when they can choose to have their photo made with Marcus Mariota, Eddie George, or Derrick Henry. Fans can choose their favorite Titans player to ride with as a green screen captures their image in the all-new 2016 Nissan Titan truck. Fans will get a free keepsake souvenir photo and lanyard and can also have the digital copy sent directly to them and their inbox.
Fans will notice much more "newness."
Bob Flynn, Vice President of Facilities and Game Day Operations for the Titans, said the team put an emphasis on enhancing the game day experience inside the stadium.
Among the additional fan/game day improvement/changes from the end of last season:
• Interior bold blue paint throughout the stadium and concourses, and new graphics of current players above the concession stands.
• Two new ticket help windows, outside of section 109.
• Four new Will Call boxes at stadium.
• Renovated suites.
• The light rakers at the stadium have been painted a bright red.
• Players murals of Eddie George and Steve McNair decorate the walls on the north side of the stadium.
• New video content for video boards from local company 3 Sons Media.
• All the bathroom floors have been resealed, and the walls painted.
• New concourse lighting on the 100 level.
• Photos of big moments in the stadium's history on the walls leading into the press box.
• New concession stands for food and drink in the upper southwest and southeast corners.
• Magnetometers at all the entry points for quicker entry.
A new PSL Founders wall is also in the process of being completed, and pole banners in the parking lots will feature some of the Titans greats including McNair, George, Wycheck, and Bulluck.
"Since we announced the naming rights partnership with Nissan, (fans) have seen tremendous improvements on the exterior of the stadium and throughout the stadium campus,'' Ockenfels said. "It's been a perfect marriage and synergy between two great brands that work together, Nissan and the Tennessee Titans.
"Last year we focused a lot of energy on the exterior of Nissan Stadium, and this past year we have focused a lot of resources and time and effort and energy on the stadium concourses. Fans should notice a big difference."