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 players return ready to practice after Hurricane Irma

TAMPA — As logistics go, you'd be hard-pressed to find a bigger challenge than making sure 53 football players all get back in town for a busy week of practice in the aftermath of a major hurricane.

But the Bucs have pulled it off, going 53-for-53 in getting their roster back safely to One Buc Place as practice resumes in full today for Sunday's season opener at home against the Bears.

The NFL mandates that players get four consecutive days off during a bye week, and when the Bucs' Week 1 game at the Dolphins was postponed to November, they had to honor the bye-week requirement, sending players off for the long weekend, knowing Hurricane Irma could make return travel exceedingly difficult.

Doing that right starts with Bucs ownership, which chartered five planes to take 130 players and football and business staff to Charlotte, N.C., for those who wanted to escape the threat of the hurricane. Under the oversight of chief operating officer Brian Ford, the Bucs took on the task of setting up return travel, an uncertainty until Tampa International Airport announced it would re-open Tuesday.

Tim Jarocki, the team's senior manager of team operations, coordinated not only the Charlotte trip, but the challenge of bringing together a roster spread across the country — rookie TE Antony Auclair even went home to Canada over the weekend. Duke Preston, the team's director of player engagement, kept in touch with players and their families as well.

The Bucs scheduled a walkthrough practice for Tuesday evening, this after just two full practices in 12 days since the preseason ended Aug. 31. But the three most important days of practice ­— today, Thursday and Friday — are in place as normal as Tampa Bay prepares for Sunday's home game against the Bears.

Big homecoming

With the official announcement Tuesday that the Bucs-Bears game would be played as scheduled Sunday, the game should have a strong crowd as the Tampa Bay area still recovers from Irma. Tickets on the secondary market were selling for $65 on TicketMaster — above face value for season-ticket holders — and last year's Bucs-Bears game had the second-highest announced attendance of any 2016 home game at 62,898.

Contact Greg Auman at gauman@tampabay.com and (813) 310-2690. Follow @gregauman.

 

 

Bucs players return ready to practice after Hurricane Irma 09/12/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, September 13, 2017 2:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 'Raging Bull' boxer Jake LaMotta dies at 95

    Obituaries

    Jake LaMotta, the former champion boxer whose life was immortalized by Robert DeNiro in the 1980 film Raging Bull, died Tuesday at age 95.

    Jake LaMotta and his fiance Denise arrive for the world premier of the critically acclaimed boxing drama "Ring Of Fire: The Emile Griffith Story" at the Beekman Theater in New York in 2005. LaMotta, whose life was depicted in the film "Raging Bull," died Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017, at a Miami-area hospital from complications of pneumonia. He was 95. [Associated Press]
  2. J.R. Sweezy shows what Bucs were missing

    Bucs

    By Greg Auman

    TAMPA —- Sunday's season-opening win against the Bears saw the debut of 13 Bucs, a mix of rookies and free-agent veterans.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive guard J.R. Sweezy (73), seen at center, runs through drills during training camp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, July 31, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times 

  3. Cannon Fodder podcast: Bucs-Vikings features a battle of top rookies

    Bucs

    Greg Auman looks at how much the Bucs have changed since the last time they played the Minnesota Vikings in 2014 in our latest Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Bucs tight end O.J. Howard (80) makes a reception as Chicago Bears free safety Eddie Jackson (39) tackles him Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  4. Late Holy Names swimmer Cailin Cannella was a fighter until the end

    Swimming Preps

    At swim meets, Cailin Cannella would race side-by-side with her breastroke competitors, their heads bobbing in near unison.

    Holy Names swimmer Cailin Cannella, here at age 13, still was practicing last year after finding out she had osteosarcoma (bone cancer). [Times 2016]
  5. Gators roundtable: Was that really a Hail Mary?

    College

    Florida quarterback Feleipe Franks' last-second heave beat Tennessee Saturday in Gainesville, but was it a Hail Mary, typically a pass made in desperation with little chance of success? The Times' college football coveage team weighs in:

    NO, BUT IT WAS A MIRACLE

    Feleipe Franks #13 of the Florida Gators celebrates with his teammates after he threw a 63-yard pass at the end of the game to defeat the Tennessee Volunteers 26-20 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on September 16, 2017 in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)