The 2015 NFL season will conclude this Sunday, Feb. 7, in Santa Clara, California, as the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos battle for the right to be crowned Super Bowl 50 champions.
Thanks to the presence of a strong El Niño, California has been the beneficiary of an onslaught of storms which have delivered much-needed rain and mountain snow to the drought-plagued state. The state's snowpack is currently the deepest it's been in five years, according to the Los Angeles Times.
For the NFL and football fans traveling to the game, the state will get a reprieve from stormy weather this week as a big area of high pressure across the West Coast keeps dry weather in place through game day.
Conditions on Sunday at Levi's Stadium, home to the San Francisco 49ers, look "quite nice," with sunny skies, light winds and a kickoff temperature near 70 degrees Fahrenheit, according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Brian Edwards. Kickoff is slated for 6:30 p.m. EST.
A normal high temperature for the Santa Clara area on Feb. 7 is 61 F.
Denver is making its eighth Super Bowl appearance, which is tied for most all time with New England, Pittsburgh and Dallas. A victory on Sunday would give Denver its third Super Bowl title.
This is the second time Carolina will play on Super Bowl Sunday. They lost to the New England Patriots 32-29 in Super Bowl XXXVIII in Houston back in 2004.
Thanks to the expected dry conditions for the days leading up the big game, both teams should be able to practice outdoors. The Panthers are practicing at San Jose State University, while the Broncos are practicing at Stanford University in Palo Alto.
The Panthers' website reported that during Monday's windy practice, some Panthers players wore their helmets even when they weren't doing drills because they wanted to stay warm. Highs were in the mid-50s in San Jose, while back in the team's hometown of Charlotte, temperatures were in the low 70s.
Cloudy and cool weather will remain through Wednesday, with highs near 60 F, Edwards said. Sunshine will prevail Thursday through Saturday with temperatures steadily rising into the upper 60s, he added.
Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning is making his fourth trip to the Super Bowl and each time he's appeared in the big game it's been held in an outdoor stadium. Super Bowl XLI in 2007 in Miami was Manning's first Super Bowl appearance, and only victory, as the Indianapolis Colts beat the Chicago Bears 29-17. That game was notable because it was played in a steady downpour and both teams combined for eight turnovers.
This is the first Super Bowl to be played in California since January of 2003 when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Oakland Raiders 48-21 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego at Super Bowl XXXVII. The last time the Super Bowl took place in the Bay Area was in January 1985 for Super Bowl XIX when the San Francisco 49ers beat the Miami Dolphins 38-16 at Stanford Stadium.