Graduation Year

Spring 2014

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Darren Filson

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© Max Zipperman 2014


This paper utilizes NFL game data from the 2002-2013 seasons in an investigation into the effects of temperature and wind on NFL passing and rushing performance. There are three separate analyses: (1) the general effects of weather on performance and the advantages/ disadvantages of playing at home with respect to weather, (2) a comparison of how teams respond to weather when at home vs. on the road, and (3) an examination of the effect of transitioning weather conditions on visitor performance. Teams tended to have inferior passing success in low temperatures and consequently supplant passing attempts with rushing attempts in those conditions. The results suggest that teams perform better at home and that visiting teams are more sensitive to extreme weather conditions. The results also indicate that visiting teams playing in significantly colder conditions than their home stadium are the most vulnerable to inclement weather.