Bucs declare local TV blackout
In an effort to avoid the needless drama leading up to the official deadline, the Bucs are declaring an official blackout for Saturday's preseason game against the Chiefs.
The NFL requires a sellout at least 72 hours prior to kickoff, a deadline that would come Wednesday night. But the team is still well short, so much so that it proceeded with making the news official a day early. The last Bucs game to be blacked out was on Oct. 26, 1997.
Three games were blacked out last week in the NFL, including games in San Diego and Cincinnati -- both of which were playoff teams last season.
The game will be shown on tape delay on Channel 8 on Sunday at 11 a.m.
The NFL blackout policy requires that games be blacked out in the home market (in this case Tampa/St. Petersburg) and also in "secondary" markets. Those are defined as a television market with stations having signal penetration to within 75 miles of the game site. In this case, Sarasota/Bradenton and the Orlando markets would fall into this category.
Anyone with intentions of driving elsewhere to see the game better gas up first.