7 extreme weather conditions that will impact NFL games this season

Football season is almost here, and that means millions of fans will brave extreme weather conditions to watch their favorite NFL team battle for victory.

Through extreme heat, freezing cold and everything in between, the league is known for playing in brutal weather conditions.

If Mother Nature sticks to the normal playbook, weather forecasters already have a good idea of ​​which games might be the coldest, the hottest, the windiest, and even the snowiest.

Here are the seven games to watch in the 2022-23 NFL regular season.

Hottest Potential Game

After many sweltering preseason games, the NFL’s first regular season games will kick off in early September.

If Mother Nature sticks to what is usually seen in the first month of metrological fall, Glendale, Arizona will host the hottest NFL game of the season.

The Chiefs are scheduled to face the Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on Sunday, September 11.

Days in the desert southwest are generally hot with highs reaching 100 degrees.

But if you’re a fan, don’t worry about sitting and sweating in the extreme heat.

Glendale Stadium has a retractable roof that is usually closed, and there is usually plenty of air conditioning in the arena.

Days in the desert southwest are generally hot with highs reaching 100 degrees.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Phoenix Stadium.
State Farm Stadium has a retractable roof that is usually closed.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

One gaming venue that has no choice but to close its roof is Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.

The Patriots will face the Dolphins on the same day as the game in Arizona, so the game in Sunshine State will be in contention for potentially having the hottest temperature on the field.

An average high in South Florida typically hits near 90 degrees, which doesn’t account for humidity or the impact of pavement absorbing and radiating some of the heat.

Hard Rock Stadium.
Hard Rock Stadium does not have the ability to close its roof in hot weather.
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images
Dolphin lovers.
The Patriots vs. Dolphins game will be in contention for potentially having the hottest temperature on the field.
Eric Espada/Getty Images

Coldest potential game

The coldest game looks destined to be at Lambeau Field when the Detroit Lions take on the Green Bay Packers in the final week of the regular season.

The NFL is still working on the schedule, but it looks like the game will take place in the first two weeks of the new year.

According to climate data, a typical day in early January in Green Bay sees a low of around 12 degrees and a high that only reaches the mid-20s.

Lambeau field.
A typical day in early January in Green Bay sees a low of around 12 degrees and a high in the mid-20s.
Larry Radloff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Depending on the large-scale weather features that are in control, it is not uncommon for temperatures to never rise above zero and for lows to drop below -20 degrees.

Cold air temperatures do not account for potential wind chill which could make prolonged exposure to the elements even more hazardous.

Rainiest Potential Game

If the confrontation between the Patriots and the Dolphins on September 11 is not the hottest, it may be because of the afternoon thunderstorms.

The almost daily occurrence of wet weather could make South Florida’s game the wettest of the year.

Primarily due to storms, no other city hosting NFL games receives as much precipitation as Miami.

Hard Rock Stadium.
Play is suspended when lightning is detected near Hard Rock Stadium.
Doug Benc/Getty Images

The metro area averages over 60 inches of precipitation annually, and a day in early September could see about a third of an inch of precipitation.

Unfortunately, the rain usually comes from thunderstorms, which tend to produce lots of dangerous lightning.

According to Hard Rock Stadium, when lightning is detected nearby, they encourage the public to seek shelter and suspend game operations.

Windiest Potential Game

If the weather is average, get your anemometer ready for the Dolphins and Patriots game on January 1, 2023.

According to NOAA data, winds average 12.6 mph in eastern Massachusetts during the first month of the year.

Not only do the winds have a significant impact on the kicker’s ability to get the ball through the uprights, but the force of Mother Nature can also impact the betting line before teams even see the field.

Chicago’s claim to be the “Windy City” carries little weight at the start of the new year, as cities like Buffalo and New York tend to have higher wind speeds.

Snowiest Game

Cold weather fans may have to wait until the last week of the regular season to see the snowiest games.

While the NFL is still determining final game times and dates, weather almanacs give us an idea of ​​what to expect.

If Old Man Winter sticks to his standards, the Patriots’ playoff rematch against the Bills might have the most snow on the ground.

Lambeau field.
Fans enter a snowy Lambeau Field before a game.
Stacy Revere/Getty Images
A Green Bay Packers fan dances in the snow in a bathing suit.
Games in Chicago, Green Bay and Denver have a chance of seeing snow.
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Buffalo, New York, averages just under an inch of snow per day in early January.

The region ranks ahead of cities such as Chicago, Green Bay and Denver, which will also host games, with a likelihood of seeing snow.

First game of the year under the night sky

The first game of the year that starts after sunset and doesn’t take place under a lights-covered roof will be the game between the Bears and Packers on Sept. 18.

Sunday night’s game begins at 7:20 p.m. CDT, approximately 24 minutes after sunset.

As the season progresses, more and more games will start without sunshine due to the shortening of days between the summer and winter solstices.

The subtle change in light can have more of an effect on the body than meets the eye.

Medical experts say that a change in light and weather can affect a body’s circadian rhythm.

A study published in the National Library of Medicine found that football players who were able to control their sleep patterns had an advantage during games.

Highest elevation clearance

Believe it or not, the human body is impacted by elevation, and in the 2022-2023 season, a few venues may play a part in which team becomes victorious.

One game to watch will be the Nov. 21 game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Arizona Cardinals in Mexico City.

The Estadio Azteca has an elevation of approximately 7,200 feet.
Alika Jenner/Getty Images
Mexico field.
Mexico City has posted advice on its website for visitors to learn about the potential for altitude sickness.
Miguel Tovar/LatinContent via Getty Images

Usually, Denver boasts of having the highest game, but due to the league’s international series, the Estadio Azteca wins at an elevation of around 7,200 feet.

Medical experts say people who are unaccustomed to high altitudes may see increased exhaustion due to the body’s inability to transport oxygen.

Mexico City has posted facts and tips on its website so visitors can learn more about the potential for altitude sickness when visiting the Central American country.

About Jefferey G. Cannon

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