It wasn’t the coldest NFL game on record Sunday, but the cold still took a toll. At the noon kickoff, the temperature at Chicago’s Soldier Field was 11 degrees above zero, but a 12-mph breeze made for a wind chill of -4°F.
Loyal fans still came out to cheer on their teams, but even then, thousands of seats at Soldier Field went unfilled. For the players, playing in the cold is completely different. The ground is like concrete, causing every tackle to hurt. It even hurts to catch a football. At some point it gets so cold that equipment starts failing, and that’s exactly what happened Sunday.
At one point in the game, it was so cold that the Chicago Bears “C” on the helmet of Bears running back Ka’Deem Carey was knocked off, due to the result of a hit by Packers linebacker Joe Thomas.
— Jarrett Payton (@paytonsun) December 18, 2016
Helmets worn by Packers players didn’t fare so well, either. After the game, Green Bay linebacker Jake Ryan posted a photo of his, showing how unusually battered and disfigured it had become.
When you play in -10°… pic.twitter.com/ILQJH7dp1h
— Jake Ryan (@JakeRyan_47) December 18, 2016
The coldest NFL game on record was in 1967, which has been named the “Ice Bowl,” when the Packers defeated the Cowboys for the league championship. It was -13°F at kickoff with a wind chill of -36°F.