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Steelers Owner Addresses Heinz Field Naming Situation

A general view of the Pittsburgh Steelers stadium.

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 16: A general view of the field during the game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Kansas City Chiefs at Heinz Field on September 16, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

The Pittsburgh Steelers have played home games at Heinz Field ever since unveiling the new stadium in 2001. Yet an expiring naming rights deal means everyone may need to get used to calling it something else this season and beyond.

Art Rooney II hopes that won't be the case.

In an interview with WPXI's Jenna Harner, the Steelers owner said he's "optimistic about keeping the name as is."

Kraft Heinz paid $57 million for the original 20-year arrangement. The two sides agreed to a one-year extension to maintain the name throughout the 2021 season.

Heinz will undoubtedly need to shell out more money to re-up the sponsorship. And although Rooney expressed hope of maintaining a name now synonymous with the Pittsburgh venue, money talks. The organization could quickly toss tradition aside if someone makes a better offer.

Let's hope any potential new name isn't as awkward as recent switches such as Smoothie King Center (home to the New Orleans Pelicans), loanDepot park (Miami Marlins), and Arena (Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers).