Today’s Miami Dolphins vs. Pittsburgh Steelers game has playoff implications. For all that matters it’s a loser go home winner stay alive atmosphere. Atmosphere is the key word today as once again, Mother Nature is sticking her hand into the outcome. Somewhere along the line one or both of these teams pissed off the old lady as she seems intent on rearing her lovely head from time to time when the two square off.
This year the temperatures will be a balmy high 20 with winds at 11 miles per hour (Dolphins @ Steelers tickets remain available if you’re looking to sit through the weather.) Snow will fall on and off for the game. Weather could once again make this a ground attack for both teams.
Today’s weather forecast is not the first such meeting between the two teams.
Two of the Miami Dolphins coldest games have been played in Pittsburgh. On 12/20/1979 the two teams met in the playoffs where the game time temp was 24 degrees. The Dolphins lost. In 1988 they met in 23 degree weather where Miami lost again. Conversely the two teams have squared off in on of the Dolphins top ten hottest games as well. A 1995 scorcher at 91 degrees, not an on field temp. Miami won that one.
While temperature has played a part, Mother Nature has seen fit to also give the two teams some adverse conditions as well.
During Dan Marino’s time with the Dolphins, a heavy storm grounded the Dolphins aerial attack. Television replays of the game showed massive waterfalls cascading off the upper decks into the bowls below. Water ran down the walkways in what looked like rapids.
In 2004 the two teams met in Miami following a hurricane. The remnants of that storm drenched the field with water and knocked out power to the Steelers hotel room the night before. Ben Roethlisberger was starting his first NFL game. The game was moved to Sunday night.
Again in 2007 the two teams squared off in Miami for another deluge. The ground was so soggy that a Brandon Fields punt nosedived into the ground and stuck a quarter of the way into the water logged sod.
Today playoff are on the line and while the Dolphins may be able to survive a little better than Pittsburgh with a loss it will not be by much. Following this weekend, three games will remain on the NFL schedule and today’s loser will all but mathematically eliminated. A loss will hurt Miami’s conference record which could be the tie breaker for the sixth seed. In addition, a loss will put Miami down to both Baltimore and Pittsburgh and they would be immediately eliminated in a three team tie with those teams.
Miami is currently on a five game losing streak to the Steelers.