After returning to One Buccaneer Place for an early morning film study and a late morning practice on Wednesday, the Tampa Bay players will be getting the next five days off before returning to work on Tuesday, November 1. While this is the Buccaneers' bye week, having five straight days off might seem excessive for a team that fell to 4-3 on the season after a 24-18 loss to Chicago in London.
Before Tampa Bay fans think that head coach Raheem Morris is all of a sudden running a country club or a resort instead of a football team at One Buccaneer Place, keep in mind that the new collective bargaining agreement mandates that all NFL teams have at least four consecutive days off for the players during the bye week with no exceptions. Those four days are Thursday, October 27 through Sunday, October 30.
It is also worth noting that the Buccaneers players had to use two half days to travel to and from London, which took away some of the players' personal time off.
Because the following week is a game week for the Bucs, who will be traveling to New Orleans to face the Saints, the collective bargaining agreement mandates that the players get one day off per week, which is typically on Tuesdays. However, instead of coming back to One Buc Place on Monday, then taking Tuesday off and returning to practice on Wednesday, the team has decided to take Monday, October 31 off to get all of the off days out of the way before returning to work on Tuesday, November 1 where the team can prepare to play the Saints for five consecutive days.
Some players, including QB Josh Freeman, plan to stay in Tampa for the next two days to watch film with the coaches before heading out of town this weekend. Freeman mentioned going back to Kansas City and going to watch his alma mater, Kansas State, host Oklahoma in Manhattan, Kan. on Saturday.