National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce


Tuck Rule Game image
image courtesy


Although the "Tuck Rule" has been rescinded, the game that has been nicknamed the Tuck Rule Game remains one of the most interesting AFC divisional playoff games ever played.  Adding to the confusion of reversing a call that led to the New England Patriots scoring six unanswered points to win in overtime against the Oakland Raiders, weather was a factor as well.

The game took place on January 19, 2002 in Foxborough, Massachusetts.  Low pressure organizing over the southeast United States that morning moved off the eastern seaboard during the afternoon and began to deepen rapidly as it headed northeast just off the coast.  Snow started falling in eastern Massachusetts around 6pm and continued until 2am that night, dropping a total of about four inches of fresh new powder.  The heaviest snow fell between 8 and 10pm, which was exactly when the game was played.  Winds weren't too bad, coming in from the north around 10mph with a few gusts to 20mph, but with temperatures in the middle and upper 20s it was still a chilly evening.

The weather map below is from early the next morning.  The dashed red line shows the path of the low pressure system that formed the previous day and moved up the coast overnight.  New England was on the cold side of the storm track, in a perfect position for significant snowfall.  The yellow dot is Foxborough's location.

Weather Map for 7am EST January 20 2002