This was the most anticipated game of the season for NFL fans all over the country, yet the weather was unforgiving.
This Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys vs. New England Patriots game at Gilette Stadium was almost a washout. The game kicked off at 4: 25 PM E.T and aired on local Fox.
The forecast in real-time
Foxborough’s forecast was 44 degrees Fahrenheit with 90% precipitation, 90% humidity, and a wind speed of 16 mph. By the game’s start time, that forecast saw some slowdown with wind speeds dropping from 16 to 14 mph. Temperatures also dropped from 44 to 39 degrees with the real feel at 30 degrees. However, humidity raised to 91% as of 4:15 pm ET.
Did the weather impact Dak Prescott’s performance?
Some predicted that the weather would neutralize the Dallas Cowboy’s Prescott’s influence on the game. WFAA ABC Channel 8 called this weather a godsend for Patriot Nation. Did it impact Prescott? Or did he come out on top nonetheless, catching this season’s somewhat underwhelming performance of the Patriots off-guard?
Prescott bragged up the Cowboy’s offense, saying that the Patriots had not seen anything like his team’s spearhead charge. Yet, he was met with an equal powerhouse defense. Cowboy and Patriots met each other like an unstoppable force and an immovable wall. Cowboy’s have been good so far this year, but Patriots played 9-1 with this rock-solid defense. Plays were led by top-performers like Tom Brady and tailback Ezekiel Elliot.
At the beginning of the game, associated with the weather, Prescott’s throw was slightly tipped and off-kilter. Cowboys also found themselves kicking against the wind in the pregame warm-ups. Yet, in the early game, Prescott broke through, challenging and scrambling to keep his performance top-of-the-line under the driving weather.
Tom Brady plays some of his best ball, passes to Harry
At the start of the game, the temperature was 40, but it was dropping. Throughout the first 4 plays, the announcers saw weather conditions as a serious factor in the game. Patriots’ Tom Brady was able to intercept the ball in early game plays, but he hit the ground because of the hard winds. As the Fox announcer stated,
“Wind forced the fumble. Brady got it on the hop.”
These heavy conditions added some serious stress to the somewhat vulnerable defense the Patriots were left with.
Brady passes to the rookie for defining moment
Brady made a comeback later in the first quarter though when he passed the ball to Nkeal Harry. Harry then scored the first touchdown of his career. This brought the game to 7-0 Patriots.
As the first quarter ran to its wrap, the Cowboys made the mistake of giving Brady a short field. As Patrik Walker said, “It doesn’t matter if his WR corps is subpar or if the weather is unpleasant at that point. It’s a layup for him.”
Likewise, Prescott’s throws had a poor performance at this stage which led to an intercept from Stephon Gilmore. Solidifying the strength of the Patriot defense, and repeating the trend of Dallas’ seasonal slow-start.
Harry is the 75th different pass catcher that Brady has thrown a touchdown to, citing CBS sports commentator Tyler Sullivan.