UPDATE 1/18, 10 pm: The forecast continues to get worse for the Chiefs and Titans. NOAA is now calling for a high near 20 degrees, with north northwest wind 10 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 22 mph. Those winds will bite at that temperature, feeling like -3 to 7 degrees.
It still doesn’t look like sustained winds will be hard enough to be a real problem for the passing game, so we shouldn’t downgrade the passing game. The heated field and adrenaline amped up with a chance to get to the Super Bowl should be enough to keep these teams playing near the top of their ability.
UPDATE 1/17, 10 am: Kansas City is currently getting hit with freezing rain that has shut down the K.C. airport. That is going to put a lot of reporters and fans in a tough spot but the game still looks like it will be clear and sunny, with winds around 6 mph. The forecasted temperature has taken a hit, as it was going to get up to around freezing but now it should stay below freezing with a high in the mid-twenties. The Chiefs did install a heating system under the field in 2016, so the field should be okay, as precipitation should stop Friday evening.
The Tennessee Titans will face the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium in the AFC title game on Sunday. This weekend we have both games in the great outdoors, so the elements could play a factor. Weather is always worth looking into, as perfect conditions are better than not-so-perfect conditions, but weather can often be overstated when trying to factor its impact on games, especially the fantasy statistics that come out of those games. Extreme weather will have an impact but quantifying what is extreme can be difficult.
The fantasy community usually uses 20 mph winds as the number to look for when downgraded a passing game, while rain and snow aren’t as impactful unless the wind is there as well.
Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Chiefs
The National Weather Service has Kansas City topping out with a high of 32 degrees with partly sunny skies on Sunday afternoon. Forecasts, of course, get more accurate as we move close to the day but Saturday also looks to have similar weather, giving us a good chance for a precipitation-free game. It will be cold, but if that sun can stay out, we’ll have almost ideal conditions for Kansas City in mid-January.
So far, the wind appears to be reasonable at 5-10 mph. Wind forecasts can change fairly quickly, so we’ll keep you updated, but at this point, there is nothing to worry about for Patrick Mahomes and Ryan Tannehill in the passing game.
Cold weather could help Derrick Henry, as the thought of tackling him in 70 degree weather is a nightmare in itself, but taking him head on in freezing weather sounds like some kind of torture device.