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Jets to open on MNF

A view of the completed field at the

A view of the completed field at the new Meadowlands Stadium, which will host the Jets and the Giants beginning in 2010. (Dec. 8, 2009) Photo Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa

The commissioner has rendered his verdict. The great coin flip debate is over.

Just a few minutes ago, the NFL announced the Jets will host the first preseason game at the New Meadowlands Stadium while the Giants get to host the first regular-season tilt at the $1.6 billion stadium.

But don't be angry Jets fans. Your team will also be playing at the new edifice during NFL Kickoff weekend. The Jets will play a yet-to-be-determined opponent on Sept. 13 in the first "Monday Night Football" game of the season.

The NFL is completing the final stages of the 2010 schedule and expects to announce the opponents for both team's home openers soon. The entire schedule should be released next month.

"After extensive discussions with both teams," commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement, "we have come up with what we believe is a unique approach for celebrating the opening of the new Meadowlands Stadium."

The Jets posted a story on the team's website Saturday night stating that a coin toss would determine the team that would play at home first. Turns out, it had already happened.

Goodell, who is responsible for determining the playing schedule under the NFL's constitution and by-laws, had to mediate which team got first dibs on the new digs. He knew ownership from both teams wanted their squad to be the first to play in the new stadium. But the Giants and Jets couldn't even agree on how to resolve the issue, including whether to conduct a coin flip.

Since both teams presented good reasons for playing the first regular-season tilt at home, Goodell figured that the best way to settle things would be to let both teams play at home on opening weekend. So, he went old school and flipped a coin to see what team got the Sept. 12 date.

Goodell flipped the coin Friday with staff at the NFL's offices, leading up to today's announcement. Both teams, in my mind, got a fair shake with this outcome.

The 2010 campaign, by the way, will mark the first time in nearly 20 years that the Giants and Jets opened up at home on the same weekend. The last -- and only previous time -- that happened was came in 1991, when the Jets took on the Bucs on Sept. 1 at Giants Stadium and the Giants hosted the 49ers on "MNF" the following night.


For those looking for a few words from LaDainian Tomlinson on his new team, we won't hear from the future Hall of Fame running back nor GM Mike Tannenbaum until tomorrow.

New York Sports