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    DAVE EPSTEIN

    Clear, chilly weather expected for Sunday’s playoff game

    Foxboro, MA 12/04/2005: Patriots quarterback Tom Brady exhales into the very cold night air in Foxboro during New England's 16-3 victory over the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium. (Globe Staff Photo/Jim Davis) section:sports Library Tag 12052005 Sports
    Jim Davis/Globe Staff
    Patriots quarterback Tom Brady exhaled into the very cold night air in Foxborough during a 2005 game against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium.

    It’s been one of the quietest starts to winter ever recorded when it comes to snow accumulation; most areas are now at a foot or more below average snowfall totals. That’s not going to change in the next few days.

    Dave Epstein/NOAA Data
    Snowfall this season has been one of the lowest ever recorded at this point in winter.

    You may have heard that there could be a storm late this weekend, which would coincide with the Patriots playoff game at Gillette Stadium. Some of you might even be hoping for a snowstorm, as Tom Brady and the Patriots have performed well in poor weather in the past, but that’s not going to happen.

    A low pressure system will pass quietly out to sea south of New England Saturday night and Sunday. The cloud shield from the system will likely make it into the area, but that is all.

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    But although there won’t be any snow, there will be plenty of cold.

    Tropical Tidbits
    A storm will likely miss New England this weekend.
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    We haven’t had any days of extended weather this winter where the temperature hasn’t broken freezing, but starting Friday high temperatures won’t be reaching the melting point. This will continue throughout the weekend.

    The way the weather looks right now, a high pressure system coming down from Canada will keep Sunday’s storm to the south. It will also keep temperatures quite chilly and if you are planning on tailgating, you will definitely want to bundle up. The temperature is expected to be in the low-to-mid 20s.

    Dave Epstein
    High temperature predictions for Sunday, Jan. 13

    Wind can also be a factor during football games, and we are certainly going to see gusty conditions Thursday and Friday. However, by the time we get to the middle of the weekend, winds will slack and there will likely be little to no wind during Sunday’s game.

    Since the game is in the afternoon, temperatures really won’t fluctuate very much. This time of the year, we reach the maximum temperature around 2 or 2:30 p.m. and it only falls two to four degrees by 4 p.m.

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    If the game did go past sunset, which is just after 4:30 p.m., temperatures could eventually dip to the upper teens.

    I don’t see any storm threats until sometime later in the week so until then, the snow drought will continue.