ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. —

The second half of the NFL season can be brutal for any team coming to New Era Field thanks to the constant threat for snow, wind, and bitter cold. But do the Bills play in the NFL’s most intense weather on their home field? Fans certainly think so, and the data agrees.

You don’t have to look back very far to find winter unleashing its wrath on the gridiron. A band of lake effect snow was dumping right over the stadium when the Colts came to town in 2017. 

New era before and after
Channel 2 sports reporter Heather Prusak took these photos from the sideline of the Bills game against the Colts in 2017. The image on the left is from 11:00 a.m. The image on the right is from 12:42 p.m.
Heather Prusak

Related: Photos from the 2017 “snow bowl”

That game quickly gained national attention as grounds crew members worked nonstop just to keep the lines visible as snow accumulated 2 to 3 inches per hour. Snow totals from that Sunday and Monday reached 16.7 inches in Orchard Park. 

But there are 29 other NFL cities, and some of them certainly get a fair share of snow. Cold and wind are big factors that were taken into account too. 

Some teams also have a roof over their stadium. For the sake of crowning the NFL’s toughest weather, those cities were excluded. You have to play in the elements for it to count, of course.

See how cities like Green Bay, Foxborough and Chicago fared in the battle against Buffalo for the unofficial title of the NFL’s toughest weather town in this week’s episode of Heather’s Weather Whys.

New episodes of Heather’s Weather Whys are posted to the WGRZ YouTube channel every Wednesday evening. You can also watch it on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. on Channel 2 News.

If you have a weather question for Heather to answer, send it to her at heather.waldman@wgrz.com or connect with her on Facebook or Twitter.

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