The San Francisco 49ers will face two opponents Monday night: The Washington Redskins and the cold.
Temperatures tonight in the D.C. area are expected to be in the low 30s at kickoff with just a little bit of wind to cool things down even further.
As 49ers rookie safety Eric Reid—a Louisiana native who is not particularly accustomed to sub-freezing conditions—tweeted Sunday morning:
It’s so cold
— Eric Reid (@E_Reid35) November 24, 2013
It’s been almost three years since the 49ers played a game when the temperature was below freezing at kickoff—a 34-16 loss at Green Bay on Dec. 5, 2010, when it was 29 degrees at kickoff with a 14-degree wind chill.
For quarterback Colin Kaepernick, it might not be a huge concern—he played in cold temperatures at the University of Nevada, such as the Wolf Pack’s big upset of Boise State in November 2010, when it was 30 degrees at kickoff and just kept getting colder as the night wore on.
Cold can, of course, make the hands and feet numb because a body’s reaction to cold is to take blood flow away from the extremities to keep the core of the body warmer. That shouldn’t be too big a concern in temperatures that are just a bit below freezing, but it’s worth pointing out that it will be nearly 30 degrees colder tonight than the 49ers’ previous cold-weather mark this season—when it was 60 degrees in London for their game against the Jaguars last month.
Just a sub-plot to keep in mind as the action plays out from suburban Washington tonight.