Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs' home opener will not be blacked out in Tampa Bay

Gerald McCoy celebrates with fans as he leaves the field following a Bucs victory over the Chargers.

DANIEL WALLACE | Times

Gerald McCoy celebrates with fans as he leaves the field following a Bucs victory over the Chargers.

Local Bucs fans got good news Thursday, as the team announced that enough seats have been sold for Sunday's home opener against the Saints that the 4:05 p.m. game will be televised locally.

The team reached the NFL's minimum of 85 percent of non-premium tickets sold 72 hours before kickoff, something the Bucs did only twice in eight home games last season, against the Saints and Eagles. In all, 19 of 24 home games since the start of the 2010 season have been blacked out locally.

Blackouts have been the norm for Bucs home games since 2010, when the team's season-ticket base, once touted as having a waiting list of 100,000-plus fans, dropped low enough for the first blackouts since the Glazer family bought the team in 1995. Before 2010, even when the team didn't sell out games, owners were able to donate thousands of tickets to sponsors and local charities to help avoid blackouts.

Tampa Bay's average announced attendance for games at Raymond James Stadium in 2012 was 55,102, ranking 31st in the league (ahead of only Oakland) and 31st in percentage of seats filled (at 83.9 percent), ahead of only Miami. The home announced attendance had averaged over 62,000 as recently as 2009.

Bucs' home opener will not be blacked out in Tampa Bay 09/12/13 [Last modified: Thursday, September 12, 2013 4:20pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Joe Maddon gets warm reception in return to the Trop

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The night was arranged to honor former Rays manager Joe Maddon in his first visit back to the Trop, and the standing ovation from the bipartisan crowd and scoreboard video tribute seemed proper acknowledgments of his hefty role in the Rays' success during his nine-year stint.

    Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon (70) talks with reporters during a press conference before the start of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.
  2. Rays vs. Cubs, 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Cubs

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM; 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays' Blake Snell poses for a picture during the team's photo day at baseball spring training in Port Charlotte, Fla., Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Cubs game

    The Heater

    Chris Archer's night ended with his 11th loss, but he and the Rays should feel good about his six solid innings. After the forearm tightness scare in Chicago, he had two rough outings (15 hits, 11 runs, seven innings), so Tuesday was a reassuring rebound.

  4. At 6-8, Lightning prospect Oleg Sosunov comes with, and needs, a high ceiling

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — When Hall of Famer Phil Esposito first saw Lightning prospect Oleg Sosunov, he joked that the 6-foot-8 defenseman could reach the Amalie Arena ceiling.

    Lightning 6-foot-8 defenseman Oleg Sosunov competes in the preseason opener. Phil Esposito jokes that Sosunov can reach the ceiling at Amalie Arena.
  5. Jones: Rays' Kevin Cash doesn't mind following in Joe Maddon's steps

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — On this particular night, he's the other guy. He's like a talk-show guest scooted to the end of the couch. He is Kevin Cash. And the Rays manager is standing in the home dugout at Tropicana Field.

    ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 17: Manager Kevin Cash (L) of the Tampa Bay Rays reacts to action during the game against the Boston Red Sox at Tropicana Field on September 17, 2017 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Joseph Garnett Jr./Getty Images) 700012494