Winter weather is finally appearing in the national weather forecast, as temperatures are beginning to drop around the country. In addition to colder conditions, a winter weather front is making its way across the United States this weekend and will settle over the Great Lakes region on Sunday as the remainder of the Week 11 slate kicks off. While wintry conditions will hover over portions of the country, thunderstorms are expected to make an appearance in Florida this weekend, which will have an impact on Tony Romo’s return when Dallas visits Miami. Below, we will recap Week 11 weather forecasts, which include conditions ranging from sunshine to freezing temperatures. Be sure to dress in layers and grab a jacket as we dive in and see which games are worth watching from a weather perspective.
Cold Weather Concerns
The impact of cold weather on NFL offenses is felt most when temperatures dip below 30 degrees, which adds an element of concern for the games listed below. All six of the teams participating in these matchups are from cold weather locations, but a slight decrease in passing attempts is a reasonable expectation for these contests with frigid temperatures in the forecast.
Denver at Chicago (1:00 PM ET): Soldier Field will see the coldest Week 11 temperatures on Sunday as the Bears host the visiting Denver Broncos. Sunny skies will be found in Chicago during this game, but a high of 29 degrees is in the forecast as Brock Osweiler handles the quarterback duties for Denver. No precipitation or major wind concerns are in the mix for this matchup, but the passing game options in this game should receive a slight downgrade when making roster decisions this week. The passing matchup was already tough for Chicago and Denver is rolling with a brand new quarterback, so the Vegas over/under was already low (40.5) to begin with, making the fantasy impact of the cold conditions negligible.
Green Bay at Minnesota (4:25 PM ET): This important NFC North contest will be played under partly cloudy skies with a high of 35 degrees in the Sunday forecast. Winds will be reasonable at 13 mph and no precipitation will found at TCF Bank Stadium, but the cold weather will be worth noting. No major fantasy adjustments are required for this game right now as conditions will be a bit warmer than those found in Chicago, but keep an eye on pregame conditions in Minnesota on Sunday to see if the temperature drops further than expected.
Buffalo at New England (8:30 PM ET, Mon): New England will see rain showers on Sunday, but conditions are expected to dry out before Monday night’s kickoff between the Patriots and Bills. Clear skies and 25 degree temperatures are in the New England forecast for Monday evening, with no precipitation or wind interference likely. Buffalo primarily relies on the running game, and a large dose of LeGarrette Blount is expected in this game from the Patriots no matter what the thermometer says on Monday night. No serious changes should be made here, but give both running games a slight bump.
Wet Weather Watch
Temperatures will be pleasant, but thunderstorms will be the primary concern in Florida on Sunday. Conditions in the Southeast should be monitored as Sunday morning arrives.
Dallas at Miami (1:00 PM ET): Temperatures will touch 80 degrees in Miami on Sunday as the Dolphins host the Dallas Cowboys in Tony Romo’s return from injury. The main issue with the weather forecast for this game is the expected presence of thunderstorms, which are likely on Sunday morning, with chances decreasing as the day progresses. With this game scheduled for a 1:00 pm ET kickoff, the bulk of the storms may miss this contest, but rain will likely be present either way. Winds of nearly 15 mph will be worth watching as well, giving reason to slightly downgrade both the Miami and Dallas passing games on Sunday when both wind and precipitation are taken into account.
The following five games will be played in locations where no major weather interference is expected on Sunday.
Tampa Bay at Philadelphia (1:00 PM ET): Mostly cloudy skies and 49 degree temperatures are expected in Philadelphia on Sunday as the Eagles host the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Mark Sanchez will get the start for Philadelphia and won’t have any weather issues to worry about, with just 10 mph winds and no chance of precipitation in the forecast.
St. Louis at Baltimore (1:00 PM ET): M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore will see partly cloudy skies and 47 degree temperatures on Sunday as the St. Louis Rams hit the road to take on Joe Flacco and the Ravens. Case Keenum will get his first start of the 2015 season in dry conditions, as no precipitation is in the Baltimore forecast. Wind levels will also be reasonable, so all relevant fantasy options in this game are safe to start as normal.
Washington at Carolina (1:00 PM ET): The undefeated Carolina Panthers will host Kirk Cousins and the Washington Redskins on Sunday under mostly sunny skies, with 49 degree temperatures present at kickoff. No rain is in the Carolina forecast through next week, so conditions will be dry and comfortable for these two NFC teams to do battle.
Kansas City at San Diego (4:05 PM ET): The best Week 11 weather will unsurprisingly be found at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California. While the rest of the country enjoys frigid temperatures, Southern California will be warm and enjoyable on Sunday as the Chargers host the Kansas City Chiefs. Sunny skies and 80 degree temperatures will be found in San Diego for this contest, with minimal wind and no chance of precipitation. All fantasy options in this game can be trusted as usual.
San Francisco at Seattle (4:25 PM ET): Blaine Gabbert and the San Francisco 49ers will travel to Seattle this week to face the Seahawks in comfortable November weather. Cloudy skies and 47 degree temperatures will make for reasonable conditions at CenturyLink Field, with wind expected to be almost non-existent during this game. All fantasy options from these two disappointing teams can be put in starting fantasy lineups without worry.
Home Teams Are Dome Teams
Four Week 11 games will be played in domes or stadiums with retractable roofs, including Sunday night’s intriguing matchup between the Bengals and Cardinals.
Oakland at Detroit (1:00 PM ET)
Indianapolis at Atlanta (1:00 PM ET)
New York Jets at Houston (1:00 PM ET)
Cincinnati at Arizona (8:30 PM ET)