Chill Lingers for Thanksgiving Football

By Courtney Spamer, Meteorologist
November 28, 2013; 6:40 AM
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One of many American traditions for Thanksgiving Day is watching football. Players of all levels and spectators will need to watch out for a holiday chill.

Three NFL games are spread out through the afternoon and evening on Thanksgiving.

The earliest kick-off was in Detroit as the Lions hosted their NFC North Rivals, the Green Bay Packers. With the start of the game at 12:30 p.m. ET being indoors at Ford Field, spectators were able to escape the chilly November temperatures during the game.

However, those tailgating after the game should brace for more below-average temperatures. Sunshine helped the mercury to rise up to 28 degrees for Thanksgiving afternoon, but temperatures post-game will drop.

The Packers and Lions will face off on Thanksgiving Day. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)

The Dallas Cowboys battled the Oakland Raiders for the afternoon game. Kick-off was around 4:30 p.m. ET, with temperatures finally warming up by the end of the week. Sunshine was prevalent throughout the day, as temperatures climbed into the 50s just before the start of the game. However, Thursday night's temperatures will drop back down near freezing, allowing for the chance that roads could freeze up for the drive home.

The only outdoor professional game on Thanksgiving is the evening game in Baltimore. As the Ravens face their AFC North Conference Rivals the Pittsburgh Steelers, spectators and players needed to prepare for the cold.

In the wake of a major storm on the biggest travel day of the year, it was a brisk day in Baltimore. Temperatures only reached the high 30s (about 10 degrees below Wednesday's highs) during afternoon tailgating. Kick-off at 8:30 p.m. ET was in the lower 30s, but the wind made it feel more like the 20s.

There are also two NCAA Division 1 games on the evening of Thanksgiving. Although both games will be in the South, chilly weather will be a factor in the games.

The rivalry between Texas Tech and Texas in Austin certainly felt cold. Highs before the 7:30 p.m. ET kick-off hit the upper 40s, but it fell nearly 20 degrees short of the normal afternoon high in the upper 60s. No rain is expected for the game.

It was not quite as abnormally cold in Starkville as Ole Miss battles Mississippi State. Highs were in the lower 50s, but still 10 degrees below average. Game-time temperatures were in the upper 40s.

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Many local high schools will also be playing for the November holiday. Other than the cooler-than normal temperatures spanning the eastern half of the country, games in western California will have to be on the lookout for a shower or two late.

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