Thursday, January 30
JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — NFL players rely on all sorts of methods for dealing with the type of weather the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks are expected to face in the Super Bowl.
Even if there's no snow or rain on Sunday, which is what the National Weather Service predicts, the high temperature is supposed to be 38 degrees. With the opening kickoff set for about 6:30 p.m., it could be in the 20s by the time the big game comes to an end.
So how will the Broncos and Seahawks thwart the cold?
Depends on who you ask.
Seahawks backup quarterback Tarvaris Jackson recalled asking teammates for advice about handling the temperature during his NFL debut as a rookie with the Minnesota Vikings. The game was at Chicago in December 2006, and the wind chill was 1.
"A lot of the guys were like, 'When it gets that cold, there's nothing you can do,'" Jackson said.
Here are five things certain players swear by — and others say they'll avoid — while trying to brace themselves:
HEATED BENCHES: Both sidelines will have 70 feet worth of heated benches that can be turned up by each team to its desired temperature — up to 90 degrees hotter than the air, the league said.
Denver safety Michael Huff will seek out a spot: "Once you're in the game and running around, the adrenaline's flowing, you're fine. When you come to the sideline is when you really know it's cold outside. So I use the heated benches."
Seattle center Max Unger will stay away: "I try not to get too warm on the sideline. It's kind of a happy medium, I guess. You can sit on the heated benches, but I don't like it to be too much of a shock when you get back out there on the field."
'HEATERD TORPEDO FANS': Essentially space heaters, they are placed along each sideline when it gets cold. Players often can be seen huddling around, getting a bit of warm air.
Seattle defensive end Cliff Avril loves them: "We'll be fine, as long as we have ... those heaters out there."
Denver tight end Jacob Tamme sees no need: "I'm really a no-heater guy."
LONG SLEEVES: There's always the option of wearing a long-sleeved shirt under the uniform jersey, but few players go that route.
Avril was one who said he might do that.
Denver safety Duke Ihenacho was among many who said they definitely wouldn't, no matter how cold it gets: "I feel like having sleeves is like wearing a sweater. Makes me feel too heavy."
VASELINE AND WARM SKIN: By rubbing Vaseline or Warm Skin — a kind of cream — or both on their arms, players create what they call "insulators" that fill pores and brace them against wind.
Broncos safety David Bruton finds another benefit, too: "When it's cold and your skin's dry, (you get) a scrape on the helmet, next thing you know, you're bleeding profusely. Just because your skin is so dry, it's easier to get cut. That lotion helps."
His teammate, kick returner Trindon Holliday, disagrees: "I don't use those kinds of things. (The key is) basically just keeping your mind off the cold."
KEEP MOVING: Denver's Tamme offered another, less out-of-the-ordinary, way to combat the cold.
"A lot of jumping jacks," Tamme said. "That's my remedy. Kind of my go-to on the sideline."
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