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September 28, 2011 @ 1:16 pm
Current rating: 4.50 Stars/2 Votes

Bucs Expect Monday Night Game Vs. Colts To Sell Out

Written by Mark
Mark Cook


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With only 2,000 tickets available as of Tuesday night for the nationally televised Monday Night Football against the Indianapolis Colts the Buccaneers are expecting the black out to be lifted for the first time in the last 10 games.

For the first time since December 2009, local fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers may get to see their home team on television.

A spokesman for the Buccaneers announced that approximately 2,000 tickets are left for the Monday Night Football match-up with the Indianapolis Colts, and Tampa Bay’s front office is hopeful the remaining seats will be sold before the Friday deadline. Under NFL rules, if the game is close to selling out the team can ask the league for a 24-hour extension.

The last Monday Night Football game to be blacked out was in January in 2000 when the San Francisco 49ers traveled to Atlanta to face the Falcons in Week 17 of the 1999 season.

After a year’s worth of non-sellout games, the Buccaneers are excited to play before a packed house of 65,000-plus Tampa Bay fans. However, the 45,000 fans that were in attendance for last week’s 16-13 win over the Atlanta Falcons were plenty loud, according to several players.

“It was nice last week, it was actually pretty loud,” right tackle Jeremy Trueblood said. “I could tell when the defense was out there. As long as we give them a good game our fans are always loud. It’s going to be even louder when it is packed.”

Bucs safety Corey Lynch, who replaced the injured Cody Grimm last week, is looking forward to the noise a sellout crowd can make to aid Tampa Bay’s defense.

“When I went in I could barely hear the defensive calls with only 45,000 there,” Lynch said. “Hopefully it will be a fun night with 20,000 more fans there and hopefully we can come out with a win. We’re looking forward to it. It’s going to be a great game against a great team. Everyone is psyched. A lot of people are saying we’re going to win because [Peyton] Manning isn’t there, but they are a heck of a team and we still have to go out and play. We’re not taking them lightly and we’re going to be ready.”

Fifteen-year veteran cornerback Ronde Barber, who has seen his share of prime-time battles, is looking forward to his young teammates getting the overdue attention he feels they deserve.

“It will be nice,” Barber said. “We have been toiling down here in Tampa for a long time not being recognized. [It is] somewhat our fault. But you have to relish the opportunity to play in front of everybody. It’s the only game in town that night. Everybody is watching and you get a chance to showcase. So we will put our best foot forward and hopefully we can get up on a down team.”

Buccaneers head coach Raheem Morris, who also serves as the team's defensive coordinator, can't wait to see Raymond James Stadium packed and having a capacity crowd help his defense out by creating a very loud environment.

“It would be awesome,” Morris said. “It would be awesome to pack the house any night. That brings up a good point. [On Sunday against Atlanta] I know it wasn’t packed, sold out, blacked out – whatever you guys want to talk about it – but those guys in the stands on third down [with] the defensive chants to get us going – it was awesome. That’s what Tampa Bay Buccaneer football is all about. When we do get to the point where we pack this thing back up again it is going to be an intimidating place to play for anybody and we look forward to it.”

Sources also have told PewterReport.com that the nationally televised NFL Network December 17 match-up with the Dallas Cowboys is the team's next best hope of a sellout after the Colts game, as ticket sales are outpacing the remaining home contests against other teams.

Even though all 10 home games in the 2009 season were officially considered sellouts, is it widely known the Glazer family purchased the remaining unsold tickets each week to ensure the games would be broadcast locally. Coming off a 3-13 campaign in Morris’ first season as Buccaneers head coach, the 2010 opening day attendance for the home opener against the Cleveland Brown was 47,211, and the 10-game streak of games that were blacked out from local television began.

The Buccaneers were the only team in the NFL to have all of its 2010 games blacked out, and the only team to not sell out its home opener for the 2011 season. Tampa Bay drew just 52,274 for the Lions in Week 1 and only 46,995 for last week’s win over the Atlanta Falcons.

The Buccaneers' last Monday Night Football appearance was December 8, 2008 at Carolina. The 38-23 loss began a four-game losing streak and Tampa Bay missed the playoffs ultimately costing head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Bruce Allen their jobs. The last Monday Night Football game in Tampa Bay was against the Indianapolis Colts on October 6, 2003, which the Buccaneers lost 38-35 in overtime after blowing a 35-14 lead with just over five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

Last modified on Friday, 30 September 2011 17:02

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  • avatar

    My how the economy improves when going to a game is "the place to be seen" .
  • avatar

    I say YEA How About A SELLOUT. I say this year team may surprise some of the writers around country, espivvally the Northern Writers from NE,NY,NJ & Balt and Steelers. JOSH FREEMAN HAS JUST STARTED, AND THE OFFENSIVE IS JUST STARTED. GO BUCS
  • avatar

    not as hot at night... that might sell some tix.
  • avatar

    There's a rumor going around that Briscoe got traded to Dallas. Apparently he tweeted "On my way to Dallas. One of the happiest days of my life" and then shortly after that "on the plane." My guess is that he probably has been traded. I checked the tweets out and they are legit. I can't imagine him being on a plane to Dallas for any other reason than being traded. He was born and raised there. Personally I don't think it's a big deal if we got good value for him. We have Parker and I liked what I saw out of Gant in the pre-season. Have to wait and see what we got for him.
  • avatar

    Nevermind!! As it turns out he flew back to Dallas because he is the proud father of Desmond Briscoe Jr. born today. That explains the tweets. LOL!
  • avatar

    I'm not sure if this is not because of a bunch of Colts fans that are travelling via a package deal before mManning's injury? The Falcon game was much more important for Buc fans and they couldn't fill the stadium so what's the difference now?
  • avatar

    Good point Horse. I guess it's just the hype of Monday Night Football and being part of all the fanfare. I would have thought the Falcon's game would have sold out but maybe everyone thought we were gonna lose...plus the weather sucked.
  • avatar

    Way to go Tampa!!!!!! Good job.
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