Nearly 2,200kg of explosives were used to blast the Georgia Dome to smithereens at 12.30pm yesterday.
Onlookers gathered at sky-scrapers’ windows, at a revolving hotel-top restaurant, in car parks, and on nearby streets to watch the controlled destruction.
The dome opened in 1992, and it was flattened in just about 15 seconds.
The Georgia World Congress Centre Authority, which includes the 71,250-seat dome, said it would take 12 seconds for the explosives to go off plus another three seconds for sections of grandstands to hit the ground. The explosives went off in a spiral around the stadium as it collapsed on itself.
A vast debris cloud hovered over the site before slowly drifting across downtown.
The dome has been replaced by the $1.6bn (€1.36bn) Mercedes-Benz Stadium next door. Only 25m separated the two venues.
The new stadium is home to the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons and Major League Soccer’s Atlanta United.
Meanwhile, the Denver Broncos yesterday fired offensive coordinator Mike McCoy after the team’s weekend defeat to the Bengals. Andrew Dalton threw three touchdowns as the Cincinnati Bengals beat the Broncos 20-17.
“Although this wasn’t an easy decision, we needed to make this change. We have to play a more efficient brand of football offensively as we begin the final stretch of our season,” said Broncos coach Vance Joseph.
Nathan Peterman was intercepted five times in the first half as his Buffalo Bills went down to the Los Angeles Chargers 52-24. The rookie completed six of 14 pass attempts for 66 yards when he was hauled at half-time, with the Bills down 37-7.
The Chargers offence racked up 27 points in the second quarter to run away with the game and condemn the Bills to their third consecutive loss.
Case Keenum threw for 280 yards and a touchdown as the Minnesota Vikings improved their record to 8-2 after beating the Los Angeles Rams 24-7. Minnesota have put themselves in a good position to become the first team in NFL history to play a Super Bowl in their own stadium.
New Orleans Saints rallied from a 31-16 deficit with less than three minutes to play in the Superdome to win their eighth straight game by beating the Washington Redskins 34-31 in overtime.
Detroit Lions trailed 10-0 in the first quarter but recovered to beat the Chicago Bears 27-24 at Soldier Field.
Kansas City suffered their fourth defeat in five games, losing 12-9 in overtime to the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium.
Green Bay’s struggles without Aaron Rodgers continued as they were shut out by the Baltimore Ravens at Lambeau Stadium. Joe Flacco guided his side to a 23-0 win, throwing for 183 yards and a touchdown.
Tampa Bay won their rearranged trip to Miami after Hurricane Irma forced the postponement on the opening weekend of the season. The Dolphins trailed 20-7 and lost quarterback Jay Cutler to a head injury. Matt Moore rallied Miami to level the game at 20-20. But the Buccaneers won the match with Patrick Murray’s 35-yard field goal with seven seconds remaining. On the ensuing kick-off, Adarius Glanton recovered a Miami fumble for a touchdown to secure a 30-20 win.
Tom Savage led the Houston Texans to a 31-21 win over Arizona Cardinals, leaving both teams 4-5 for the season.
Cleveland Browns’ search for their first win of the season continues after losing 19-7 to Jacksonville Jaguars.
Tom Brady starred in Mexico City, throwing a trio of touchdowns as the New England Patriots beat the Oakland Raiders 33-8.
The Philadelphia Eagles scored 30 points in the second half as they overcame the Dallas Cowboys 37-9. Carson Wentz chalked up two touchdowns for the Eagles, while counterpart Dak Prescott was intercepted three times and gave up a sack-fumble which was returned for six in the fourth quarter.
Former Patriots wide receiver Terry Glenn died yesterday after being involved in a car accident in Texas. He was 43. Glenn played 12 seasons with the Patriots, Green Bay, and Dallas Cowboys. He finished his career with 593 receptions for 8,823 yards and 44 touchdowns, including the first score thrown by Tom Brady.