Behind the Forecast: How weather could affect the Super Bowl

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Science Behind the Forecast: How weather can affect the Super Bowl

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - The Super Bowl is the biggest football game of the year, so, of course, all eyes are always on the forecast.

This year, the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs will face off in Miami, so the potential for nice weather is certainly higher. The Hard Rock Stadium does have an open roof canopy. While it may protect fans from the sun and rain, the field is still open to the elements.

Thankfully, winter precipitation is not a concern for Sunday’s game; thank you, Florida weather.

Before you place your bets, here’s how the weather can play a big role in an outdoor football game. Rain makes the ball slicker, which may increase incomplete passes and turnovers. Players may adjust by wearing gloves to improve their grip. Rain also makes a field more slippery, especially if it’s natural grass.

A low sun angle can impact a player's vision, causing incomplete passes and turnovers.

Pay attention to wind speed and direction during the big game. It can cause the ball to travel less against it and further with it. Don't blame the kicker or the quarterback if the ball seems to drift a little when flying through the air; it may just be the wind.

Teams don't play during thunderstorms due to the lightning threat.

Cold and hot temperatures can affect players too! Hot temperatures can lead to heat exhaustion, cramping, and even heat stroke if the situation is allowed to become serious enough. The cold can make it harder to throw and catch the ball.

By the way, there's only been one Super Bowl game played in the rain and that game was in Miami in 2007. That resulted in eight turnovers but did grant us the awesome sight of Prince performing Purple Rain in the rain.

Thankfully, the forecast for the 2020 Super Bowl looks pleasant. Sunday in Miami should feature a high near 70° and plenty of sunshine. Temperatures closer to kickoff should be sitting in the mid to upper 60s. Gusty winds should calm by the time the game starts.

This is the 11th time that the Super Bowl will be played in Miami.

Year Teams Kick-off Temperature Location
Coldest Super Bowl (Played Outside) 1972 Dallas Cowboys vs Miami Dolphins 39° New Orleans
Coldest Super Bowl (Played Inside) 2018 Philadelphia Eagles vs New England Patriots Outside: 2° Inside: 70° Minneapolis
Warmest Super Bowl 1973 Miami Dolphins vs Washington Redskins 84° Los Angeles
Wettest Super Bowl 2007 Indianapolis Colts vs Chicago Bears 67° Miami - 0.92″ of rain fell at the Miami airport

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