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For the Kansas City Chiefs, freezing weather at Arrowhead Stadium might not be a bad thing

Temperatures could drop below zero on Saturday night for the NFL playoff game between the Chiefs and Dolphins.
Reed Hoffmann
Associated Press
Temperatures could drop below zero on Saturday night for the NFL playoff game between the Chiefs and Dolphins.

The Kansas City Chiefs take on the Miami Dolphins at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday night in what will likely be the venue's coldest game ever. KCUR's Up To Date spoke with three Chiefs reporters about the matchup, and heard from two season ticket holders about how they're preparing for the frigid temperatures.

Sheets of cardboard, battery powered jackets and heated buses. Those are just a few of the things Chiefs fans will be using to survive the freezing cold during Saturday's playoff matchup with the Miami Dolphins.

According to the National Weather Service, the temperature at kickoff will be a brisk negative-1 degrees — plus a wind chill of minus-26. It will likely be the coldest game ever played at Arrowhead Stadium.

Despite the threat of frostbite and hypothermia, 30-year-old Will Rusch, a season ticket holder, will be in the stands watching. In fact, he plans to get to Arrowhead eight hours early, along with 40 to 50 family members.

The group will be spending most of the time inside their heated bus, which they’ve nicknamed “Tequila Gator." It's a family tradition.

“They've been doing it for longer than I've been alive," Rusch says. "So this is our fourth bus that we've had. This one's now like a repurposed bread truck. And then I’ve got layers on layers and full crock pots of warm food.”

Rusch will be wearing long johns and multiple pairs of pants.

“And then I've got my special sequence playoff jacket, my mom got it for me for Christmas, and I only bust it out for the postseason.”

On the field, the Chiefs are viewed as the favorite to win.

Patrick Allen, who co-hosts the Arrowhead Addict podcast for Fansided, says he thinks the Chiefs' style of play lends itself to this kind of weather.

"The Dolphins are a little bit more of a finesse offense than what the Chiefs have," Allen said. "The Chiefs have a little bit more of a power running game with Isaiah Pacheco, and he runs hard."

"I think for a really banged-up Miami defense, going into Arrowhead, having to deal with the cold already, that's kind of annoying," he continued. "But then you've got to hit a guy like Isaiah Pacheco, or maybe more importantly, have Isaiah Pacheco hit you in that cold."

Rusch says that advantage is why he isn't worried about the cold.

"Not one bit. I want it to be colder," Rusch told KCUR. "Any advantage for the Chiefs to win. I've been looking at Miami's weather all week, 75 and Sunny. Bring it."

  • Greg Echlin, KCUR sports contributor
  • Patrick Allen, VP of content at strategy at Fansided, co-host of "Arrowhead Addict"
  • Al Wallace, former sports anchor at Fox 4, adjunct professor of journalism at the University of Kansas
  • Will Rusch, Chiefs season ticket holder
  • Korri Hall, season ticket holder

Are you planning to brave the cold for Saturday's Chiefs game at Arrowhead Stadium? Tell KCUR about your experience by sending us a text message: 816-601-4777.

If you have questions about texting with KCUR, you can find more information here.

Have questions or show ideas? Text with Up To Date!

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When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
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