Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tidbits
by Jennifer Jordan
Those who live in the Miami area may – worried that they will be shunned from restaurants and country clubs – claim to be Dolphins fans, growing fins and living underwater in their spare time. But Miami, like any other city in a state with multiple football teams, likely has its fair share of Tampa Bay fans. Perhaps these folks once lived in Tampa Bay and moved to Miami. Perhaps they grew up watching Tampa Bay or know someone who played for them. Perhaps, they (gasp!) would just rather be a Buccaneer than a Dolphin. For you Tampa Bay fans lingering in the city of Miami, this article is one you’ll likely want to pirate.
Every NFL team has its fair share of history and trivia. But, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers possess some of the most interesting trivia around. Those who disagree will have to walk the plank.
Kings of the South: Tampa Bay is the only team in the NFC South to prevail as Super Bowl Champions. Though Atlanta and Carolina have reached the Super Bowl, they have yet to be victorious. New Orleans, on the other end of the spectrum, is one of a handful of teams to have never made it to the championship.
The Rich Get Richer: The owner of the Buccaneers, Malcolm Glazer, also owns the Manchester United, an England soccer team. The Manchester United is considered the richest sports organization in the entire world.
Oops: The 1976 Buccaneers are the only team in modern day NFL history to lose every single game in a season. Since the NFL went to a sixteen game season, in 1978, several teams have gone 1-15, but no one has gone 0-16. During the 1982 season, which was shortened by a strike, the Baltimore Colts had no victories, but they had one tie to accompany their eight losses.
He could go all the way…but he won’t: The Buccaneers are the only NFL team that has never scored a touchdown on a kickoff return during a regular season game, a feat that has, up till the start of the 2006 season, been done over 1700 times by other teams. The Bucs have, however, scored five touchdowns on kickoff returns during preseason games.
A Pirate’s Curse: No team that has lost a regular season game to Tampa Bay has ever won the Super Bowl. This, because of its years in existence, is known as The Tampa Bay Curse and haunts anyone who falls to the Bucs before season’s end.
The Warm Weather Factor: Until the final regular season game of 2002, in which Tampa Bay defeated the Chicago Bears in Chicago, the Buccaneers had never won a game where the temperature at kickoff was less than 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Before beating the Bears, the Bucs had lost the twenty previous games played in cold weather.
Keeping it Real: Not only did the Bucs not do well in cold weather, but they also didn’t do well playing on artificial grass. They once lost 27 games in a row played on artificial turf in outdoor stadiums. This losing streak spanned 15 years, from the 1980 season to the 1995 season.
Coach Potatoes: Tony Dungy, who recently led the Indianapolis Colts to a Super Bowl victory and served previously as head of the Buccaneers, has seen four people from his Tampa Bay coaching staff make it as head coaches. Herman Edwards, an assistant under Dungy, coaches the Kansas City Chiefs; Rod Marinelli, a defensive coach under Dungy, coaches the Detroit Lions; Mike Tomlin, a defensive coach under Dungy, coaches the Pittsburgh Steelers; and Lovie Smith, a linebackers coach under Dungy, coaches the Chicago Bears. The former Buccaneers coaches met most recently in the 2007 Super Bowl.
Tampa Bay might not be a team full of Super Bowl rings or hall of fame names, but it’s an interesting team nonetheless, and one that some Miami fans can’t help but cheer for…even if done quietly.