It’s usually pretty cold in Kansas City in December. In the daytime it’s cold. And when the sun goes down over Arrowhead, the temperatures are expected to plunge into the teens, making for some unpleasant playing conditions, especially for the team coming from sunny California.
Currently the weather forecast calls for a low of 17 degrees in Kansas City Thursday night. There are reasons for concern, though often times those concerns can be a bit overblown. While 17 degrees is pretty cold, it isn’t quite ‘Frozen tundra’ cold. We aren’t talking sub zero temps.
Even still, it’s the ball will not have that Tom Brady softness to it and players will likely be bundled up and wearing gloves and such which could affect things like ball security.
The concerns certainly anything that would be an excuse or significant advantage for either team. Jack Del Rio isn’t concerned about it.
“Just get your mind right and go play,” said Del Rio. “We’ll be ready to go. We have a good group of guys. Feel like we’re weather proof. We’ll go play.”
Why exactly he feels the Raiders are weather proof is unknown. The team has had some difficulty with the wet field both in Oakland and in Mexico City which caused some slipping, including a their loss to the Chiefs in the rain.
The last time the Raiders faced a team in even somewhat cold conditions was their last trip to Kansas City in the 2015 season finale. It was 37 degrees at game time, some 20 degrees warmer than they will see Thursday night. They lost that game.
Often times, teams that run the ball well can handle cold games. The Raiders are currently 7th in the league in rushing with 114.6 yards per game. That could be one reason Del Rio thinks the Raiders can weather the storm.