When the Green Bay Packers take on San Francisco 49ers on Sunday (Jan. 5), it’s expected to be the coldest NFL game… ever.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the forecast calls for a high of just -5 degrees, a low of minus-20, and a wind chill of minus-51!!! Apparently, Green Bay fans were giving serious thought to even attending the game, because it didn’t sell out until Friday morning (Jan. 3).
If it hits the extreme temperatures, it will be the coldest game in NFL history.
The previous record-setting game recorded a wind chill of -48 degrees back in Jan. 10 1982 when the San Diego Chargers and the Cincinnati Bengals faced off in the AFC Championship game. During that game, the temp at Cincinnati’s Riverfront Stadium registered at -9 degrees Fahrenheit, but the wind chill dropped to -59 degrees using the calculations of the time, or -37 using modern calculations.
That night beat out the iconic “Ice Bowl” from 1967 when the Green Bay Packers took on the Dallas Cowboys at Lambeau Field, featuring a low temperature of -13 degrees, and the wind chill dropped to around -48 degrees.
Despite the freezing conditions, some players go sleeveless, refusing to change their playing attire no matter what. Vince Lombardi famously didn’t let his players wear gloves in the Ice Bowl… but the Packers of today are open to changes.
“I don’t really subscribe to ‘the less clothes I have on, the tougher I am,’ ” tight end Ryan Taylor told SI.com. “The guys who think they’re the toughest guys in the world go out wearing no sleeves. It doesn’t make any sense. Being cold doesn’t make you tough. It makes you stupid.”
Running backs coach Alex Van Pelt concurred. “If you have to wear sleeves, wear sleeves. Nobody’s going to call you soft.”