In addition to having home field advantage in their Sunday Divisional Round playoff game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Pittsburgh Steelers also figure to have a weather advantage as well as currently the forecast high temperature for the weekend game at Heinz Field is 19 degrees. Because of that early wintery forecast, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin was asked Tuesday during his weekly press conference if he has to prepare for potential weather issues this weekend.
“Yeah, but that’s always the case, particularly when you get to this point in the season,” Tomlin said. “We don’t spend a lot of time debating and talking about those things. It’s just a part of life in Pittsburgh, Pa. It is a part of life that we embrace. ”
While several Steelers players probably don’t yet fully embrace the frigid Pittsburgh weather, at least most of them on the 53-man roster have several game’s worth of experience when it comes to playing in sub-freezing temperatures. Additionally, a few of those games were played in the playoffs, a double bonus when it comes to experience. It’s probably a much different story when it comes to their Sunday opponent, the Jaguars, who beat the Buffalo Bills this past Sunday in Jacksonville where the kickoff temperature was 53 degrees.
Sunday at Heinz Field, several Jaguars players will likely be playing in the coldest temperatures they’ve ever played in not only as NFL players, but college players as well. This season, the coldest kickoff temperature the Jaguars experienced was 23 degrees and that was a few weeks ago in Nashville against the Tennessee Titans. The Jaguars, by the way, lost that game 15-10 to the Titans.
The Steelers, by the way, are 12-1 in their last 13 games they’ve played in where the kickoff temperature was 32 degrees or below.