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Special Weather Statement

Cold Shot Likely Just in Time for Super Bowl XLVIII

By Samantha-Rae Tuthill, Staff Writer
January 13, 2014, 8:28:07 AM EST


@FairwayJay tweeted: "NFL: After last week's weather, brace for snow & freezing temps for 2014 Super Bowl @ MetLife Stadium"

Additional Relevant Tweets and Social Media Reaction

With Super Bowl XLVIII playing out at the outdoor MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., this year's game has the greatest potential to be impacted by extreme cold and snowfall in history.

"We think there will be a chance to get storms around the East Coast in early February," said Expert Senior Meteorologist and member of the Long-Range Forecast Team Bob Smerbeck.

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Smerbeck said that there are indications that a stormy pattern, similar to what the East experienced in mid-December, could develop in time for the Super Bowl, with moisture comping up from the Southwest to combine with cold northern air.

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However, as the date of the game nears, chances are looking more favorable for snow to stave on for the day.

The AccuWeather Long-Range Team is expecting temperatures to rise for a time in January, but they will drop back to lower temperatures around the time the Big Game is slated to play. Lead Long-Range Forecaster Paul Pastelok said that a system may arrive in the East Friday or Friday night with some cold air behind it, but he is giving less than a 30 percent chance of snow for Feb. 2.

"Temperatures at kickoff will likely be slightly below average," Pastelok said. "But I think it will dry out by then."

'Calculated Risk'

A snowstorm would not be unusual for the New York and New Jersey early at that time of year, according to Expert Senior Meteorologist Bernie Rayno.

"They are taking a calculated risk having the Super Bowl [at MetLife Stadium]," Rayno said. "A risk because if this area is going to get a big storm, that's the time of year it will happen. Calculated because they only really need one day."

Over the past 10 years, temperatures for the date have varied from the highs in the low 50s to lows in the teens. Temperatures around 6:30 p.m., when kickoff will take place, have ranged from the lower 20s to mid-40s.

With the average high for the area on Feb. 2 at 40 degrees, and the average low is 24, a stormy system could easily drop snow. On average, the area receives 2.2 inches of snow during the first week of February.


It is important to note that long-range forecasts are not intended to give an exact forecast so far ahead of time. However, they can give an accurate representation of the kind of weather pattern that will play out. The trend for this year's winter is based on a number of factors, including the potential for a split jet stream.

An active subtropical jet stream, which carries warm, moist air, may help to create disturbances in the Gulf of Mexico, which would sweep up toward the East Coast and combine with the cold, dry air of the Arctic jet to create the stormy pattern.

When these two jet streams meet, it is a "breeding ground for nor'easters," Rayno said.

"The timing needs to be just right," Rayno said. "But if the timing is going to be right, this is the time of year it will happen for them."

Have questions, comments, or a story to share? Email Samantha-Rae Tuthill at, follow her on Twitter @Accu_Sam or Google+. Follow us @breakingweather, or on Facebook and Google+.

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