Weather Tracker

The NFL weather report (with a bonus update on what will happen in Houston)

Aaron Rodgers and the Packers should have an advantage. Photo credit: Andy Lyons

Despite a large storm system working its way across the south this weekend most NFL games will be spared impacts as the majority will be played safely away from the action. However, there are still a few games worth highlighting from a weather perspective with some being due to the conditions and others being because of the participants.

Falcons @ Packers (12:00 PM Sunday): Your 2018 Disappointment Bowl. Honestly the weather won't be too bad for December in Green Bay with the temperature in the mid to upper 20s, a windchill in the upper teens and no precipitation. However, I am spotlighting this game because of the Falcons. The Falcons have played 8 of their 12 games this season in a dome and the last outdoor cold weather game they played they lost to the Browns. Yes the Falcons are having a disappointing year and the Browns are improved but I still think the weather played a role. I wouldn't be too high on Atlanta on the frozen tundra.

Patriots @ Dolphins (12:00 PM Sunday): For some reason South Florida is like the Bermuda Triangle for the Patriots. While it won't be terrible, the weather won't be fully cooperative on Sunday. Temperatures will be in the mid 80s with some scattered rain showers. The rain shouldn't be too bad, but winds will be at about 15 MPH and gust to about 20 throughout the game.

Saints @ Buccaneers (12:00 PM Sunday): The cold front associated with the storm system moving across the southern US this weekend should be approaching the Tampa area around game time on Sunday. This is going to bring wind gusts up to 25 MPH during the game as well as some rain. While there may be some scattered rain ahead of the front, I think the bulk of it will come in a thin line along the front probably sometime in the first half. The rain in that line could be heavy and have some thunder with it but it should not last very long and will clear fairly quickly.

Rams @ Bears (7:20 PM Sunday): The weather will be clear but it will be cold. The temperature will be around 30 degrees at kickoff and will fall into the mid 20s during the game with windchills in the upper teens. I am highlighting this game only because of how the Rams may be impacted. They did win in the snow earlier this year in Denver, but these cold temperatures are still a concern for a Southern California team.

Local Weather Update:

As I am sure you all have heard by now heavy rain is expected this evening (Friday night) into Saturday morning. Be weather aware if you are going out tonight as street flooding is possible. Please don't be a dummy and drive into high water, especially after dark. A good rule of thumb is if you can't see the curb do not drive through.

If you have any questions about the games or the storm this weekend you can find me on Twitter @stephenuzick.

It may not have a name but a tropical disturbance will bring heavy rain this week

Heavy rain on the way (again)

National Weather Service Houston

So here we are a whole four days into hurricane season and we are already talking about a tropical thing in the Gulf of Mexico. The blob currently designated as Invest 91L (an Invest is an area of interest the National Hurrican Center is watching for potential development) at one point looked as though it had a chance to develop into some kind of organized system now looks like it will remain an amorphous blob. However don't let its nameless status fool you. 91L is going to be a player in our weather as it will bring heavy rain over the course of the next couple of days. So what is the story? Lets dive in...

WHY: A large area of low pressure has been in the southern Gulf of Mexico for a couple of days now slowly drifting toward the east Mexican coast far south of Brownsville. While at one time it looked like this system could develop enough to acquire the characteristics of a minimal named tropical storm (minimum winds of 39 MPH) it now appears time is running out for that to happen. To use a analogy - the system has been like a car sputtering its engine over the past few days never really able to get going. Now that it is approaching the coast it has run out of roadway to get the wheels turning. However, even though the engine may not be running very well there is still a ton of fuel (moisture) in the tank. That fuel is leaking out and being pushed our way. While this may not be the most scientifically accurate analogy I think it sums up the situation in a mostly understandable way.

Over the next two days a couple of features in the upper atmosphere, one to our west and one to out east, are going to create a windfield that will funnel the moisture from 91L into Southeast Texas.


Model showing movement of atmospheric moisture (called precipitable water moving into Southeast Texas between today and late Wednesday night. Redder colors indicate higher moisture.Weathermodels.com

The area of low pressure that is 91L combined with an area of low pressure off to our northwest will help provide the lift necessary to turn all of this moisture into rain. With that being the set up here is what you can expect.

WHEN: Rain showers could start as soon as this evening or late tonight and will continue throughout the day on Wednesday and probably into Wednesday night. By mid day Thursday things should be quieting down. Timing of the heaviest rains is going to be difficult to pin down but right now it looks like Wednesday morning is the currently the favored time (unfortunately for rush-hour), however this could easily change.

WHERE: All of the area will probably see rain from this event but amounts will be less further inland and increase as you get closer to the coast. These tropical air masses are notorious for dropping high accumulation bulls-eyes in isolated spots but those exact locations are nearly impossible to predict. If I were placing a wager I'd say the heaviest rain from this event will be most likely somewhere close to and south of the HWY 59 corridor.


Heaviest rain probably somewhere along and south of the red line

HOW MUCH: There has been some disagreement among the various computer models about how much rain we can expect out of this system. Some are showing as little as 2-3 inches while others are showing 5-7 inches with scattered bulls-eyes of 9-12 inches.


GFS (American) model of foretasted rainfall totals through Thursday evening.Weathermodels.com


European model showing foretasted rainfall totals though Thursday evening.Weathermodels.com


NAM (North American Model) showing foretasted rainfall totals through mid-day ThursdayWeathermodels.com

Usually when there is a big split in the models we like to hedge and forecast somewhere in the middle. However with a very moist tropical air mass like the one coming in, my personal thought is that the totals will be a little higher than what the middle ground would suggest. In my estimation 4-6 inches seems like a good guess south of 59 with 2-3 inches north of 59. But if you happen to get caught under a particularly heavy storm those totals could well be exceeded. While rain totals are the sexy stat around here these days, this is going to be another event where the rainfall rate is going to be the real issue. Rain will not be constantly falling for 36 hours, instead there will bands of rain that come through with breaks in between. However within those bands we may see multiple inches fall in a short period of time. As a general rule most of our streets are designed to handle 1-2 inches of rain per hour. However this system has the potential to produce rainfall rates of 3-4 inches per hour. Again not everyone will see that kind of rain dump, but someone probably will, we just cant say who exactly. With those kind of rainfall rates street flooding could be come an issue. I do not anticipate this being a major damaging flood event but I think street flooding is possible if not likely in some areas so you should just be mindful of that fact and plan accordingly, especially if the timing happens to coincide with rush hour. I know "Turn around don't drown" has become a tired phrase around here, but seriously don't drive through water, more often than not it is higher than you think it is.

I will be back with an update tomorrow morning. In the mean time feel free to find me on Twitter @stephenuzick for more weather stuff or if you have any questions.

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