Would the NFL Championship game between Dallas and Green Bay, termed “The Ice Bowl” be a revered if instead of the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field, the game was played under the sunshine of the Rose Bowl? No it wouldn’t be. Playing in the outdoors brings a host of other elements into play. There is a widely held belief that we could have a monster snow blizzard that will drop one or two feet of snow down on the New York-New Jersey area, rendering the passing game useless. The myth that you can’t pass the ball, or even score points at a frenetic pace in the snow is just not true. The past few weeks of the NFL have showed that weather only has so much of an impact on scoring.
The Sunday before Thanksgiving, New England and Denver matched up in Massachusetts and despite the heavy winds and temperatures in the single digits, the two teams combined for 65 points. This past Sunday, Detroit lost at Philadelphia, 34-20, on a field that had between one and two feet a snow. The Broncos also defeated the Titans on a frigid day in Denver, 51-28 when Peyton Manning threw for 400 yards and five touchdowns. These are all examples that cold weather doesn’t necessarily mean low scores and sloppy play, yet the narrative continues. Playing in Miami, Tampa Bay, or Pasadena gets boring after a while.
The early days of professional football was all about playing out in the elements, but now we have gotten so spoiled. Obviously depending on where you are from will change how you view this issue. The only real aspect of the game that will be adversely impacted will be field goal kicking, and if anything eliminating that will make the game more exciting. All the posturing about the weather aside, with how much global warming has changed winter weather, the temperatures will likely fall between 27-40 degrees at kickoff — hardly the temperatures the Packers and Cowboys dealt with in The Ice Bowl.