Will the snow further impact the Wild Card Weekend game?
The Wild Card Weekend NFL playoff game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Buffalo Bills was heavily affected by the recent weather in Western New York. The game had to be postponed 27.5 hours from Sunday at 1 PM ET to Monday at 4:30 PM ET.
As we head into kickoff, what is the current weather forecast for Buffalo on Monday afternoon, and how will fantasy football and betting impact that forecast?
What’s the weather forecast in Buffalo for the Steelers vs. Bills game?
- Temperature: 15-18 degrees
- precipitation: <15% chance of rain during the match
- winds: 10 – 14 mph winds southwest brisk
The weather forecast is from the National Weather Service and is correct as of 7 a.m. ET on Monday, January 15.
The good news for the game itself is that the 4-8 PM ET window may be the best weather forecast for Buffalo in the 72-96 hour window of this current weather pattern. During the game itself, there is expected to be little snow or rain, and the wind will diminish to almost nothing from an NFL perspective.
More: Fantasy News Tracker
It will still be very cold at Highmark Stadium during the game, with temperatures at kickoff hovering around 18 degrees and dropping into the 14-15 zone before the end of the fourth quarter. However, given the high winds and heavy snow that has fallen over the past 48 hours, cold weather will be the least of the problems players and fans face.
A photo from WGRZ-TV reporter Lauren Hall on Monday morning showed how much snow fell in the area around the stadium this weekend. Bills staff and people from the local area have been clearing snow from the stadium all week.
Additional updates from Hall showed that parking lots are being cleared as snowfall decreases. However, ESPN’s Alaina Getzenberg tweeted that the Bills still need help shoveling this morning suggesting there is still somewhat of a race against time to get the field ready for game time.
The good news is that local authorities have lifted the travel ban, indicating that they believe the worst of the weather has passed. The current forecast calls for about another inch of snow before game time, but there should be little to no precipitation during the game itself.
More: Steelers vs. Bills DFS picks
The problem for the NFL is that if the field is not cleared in time for the start of the game, they may have to consider moving the game. The weather forecast for Buffalo as of Monday morning shows that snow will return around 8-9 PM ET on Monday with at least 10-12 inches of snow expected to fall through Tuesday, Wednesday and into Thursday.
Based on current forecasts, it looks like the match itself will be played this afternoon, in relatively good conditions. Yes, it will be cold, but nowhere near the sub-zero temperatures in Kansas City on Saturday night. This is also good news from a fantasy and betting perspective.
Neither passing game should be overly affected by the weather on Monday afternoon. We may see some struggles for QBs, kickers and punters on Saturday in terms of the cold weather affecting the ball, but not to the same extent as it did in Kansas City.
So, if you’re looking to utilize the likes of Stefon Diggs, George Pickens, Mason Rudolph, Josh Allen, James Cook, Najee Harris, and Jaylen Warren in your lineup, you should be good to go as planned. Even the likes of Tyler Bass and Chris Boswell could have solid fantasy value this week with the winds calming throughout the game.
Regarding the betting line, we have seen a slight increase in the total for this game with the forgiving weather forecast. At 38.5 points overall, sportsbooks aren’t expecting a lot of points, but it’s better than the 36 or 36.5 points the line fell to.
Buffalo remains a 10-point favorite, and the clearer weather should suit their more dynamic pass-heavy attack better than the snowy forecast on Sunday.
Keep reading: Steelers vs. Bills projections and expert picks
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