Saints face battle with Mother Nature in Seattle

SEATTLE, WA (WVUE) - Several storm systems are pushing through the Northwest this week allowing Seattle to live up to its reputation for nasty weather as the Saints gear up for the second round of the playoffs against the Seahawks Saturday afternoon.

The storms are creating gusty winds and rain in the Puget Sound area prompting gale warnings.  Another storm moving in Friday night will keep the weather very unpleasant through kick-off and beyond.

An upper level low is pulling moisture all the way from near the Hawaiian Islands to fuel showers, thunderstorms and snow storms in Washington state.  The geography of the region makes these storms even more interesting.

Damaging winds are possible along the Washington coast with the cold front on Saturday morning.  After pushing past the coastal mountain ranges thunderstorms with heavy rain  are likely early in the day throughout the Seattle metro area with less intense showers blanketing the region through the evening hours.

It will also be extremely windy.  South to southwest winds will blow near 40 mph early in the day reducing to 20 to 30 mph through the evening hours.  At the 1:25 p.m. Pacific Time kick off and through most of the game, winds will remain in that range with higher gusts.

Saturday morning temperatures will be in the upper 40s, but will only warm to about 50 at game time.

Even with the cold, conditions in Philadelphia were almost perfect for football with light winds and dry crisp air.  This Saturday's game weather wise will be more similar to the week 16 match up with Carolina when heavy rains soaked the field in the third quarter.

Rain will make for a slower playing surface and can slow down the pass rush. Teams that can run the ball could have an advantage running between the tackles. Lack of traction diminishes movement and blocking schemes.

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