A number of Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans won’t have to wait long to finally see new stars Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski in person for the first time.
The Buccaneers announced Saturday that they’ll allow a small number of fans inside Raymond James Stadium for next Sunday’s Week 4 tilt against the Los Angeles Chargers.
In the statement, the Buccaneers said that first priority will go to fans who’ve held season tickets “since 1998 or earlier.” The team will then proceed with “a Priority Resale for the rest of of their 2020 home schedule.”
The Bucs didn’t give a final number on how many fans will be allowed inside.
Phase 3 of Florida’s reopening plan will allow the team to bring back fans earlier than expected. The Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars, Florida’s other two NFL teams, had fans for their home openers. The Jaguars also had spectators for their Thursday night tilt against the Dolphins.
The majority of NFL teams haven’t allowed fans in their stadiums yet. It’s a wait-and-see approach for many clubs. The Las Vegas Raiders, New York Giants, New York Jets and Washington Football Team won’t have any fans at their 2020 home games.
Barring any changes, this means the Buccaneers will be able to have fans for seven of their eight home games. They didn’t have any spectators for Sunday’s Week 2 31-17 home win against the Carolina Panthers.
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Tampa Bay also has home games against the Green Bay Packers (Week 6), New Orleans Saints (Week 9), Los Angeles Rams (Week 11), Kansas City Chiefs (Week 12), Minnesota Vikings (Week 14) and Atlanta Falcons (Week 17).
Entering Week 3, the Bucs and Saints are tied for the lead in the NFC South division with a 1-1 record. The Saints won 34-23 in Tom Brady’s Tampa Bay debut back in Week 1.
Raymond James Stadium will also play host to Super Bowl LV on Feb. 7. It’s unclear at this time if the NFL will be able to have fans in attendance, but the league is fully prepared for that potential scenario.
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