Dolphins, Buccaneers Waiting To Survey Irma Damage Before Finalizing Any Travel Plans
Stephen Ross is flying players, coaches, staff & their families to LA ahead of Irma.
Our thoughts & prayers are with everyone in Florida. pic.twitter.com/IlIEyOKA7f— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) September 9, 2017
MOVING PARTS: The NFL is still monitoring conditions in Tampa and Jacksonville for scheduled home openers in those cities this coming Sunday. NFL Exec VP/Communications Joe Lockhart noted Irma did not hit Tampa hard but did have significant flooding in Jacksonville. A decision is expected in the next few days (Daniel Kaplan, Staff Writer). In Tampa, Rick Stroud wrote where Sunday's Bears-Buccaneers game will "ultimately be played is anyone's guess." The NFL will have to "act quickly once it is able to assess the damage from Irma." Meanwhile, as Irma "forced evacuations" throughout the Tampa Bay area on Saturday, the Glazer family, which owns the Bucs, "scrambled to secure five small planes to fly 130 players, football and business staff members, and their immediate families to Charlotte" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 9/10). In Charlotte, Joseph Person notes depending on the damage Irma causes, the Bucs "might need to find a practice site in the Carolinas." The Panthers "could offer to share their facility or help get the Bucs set up at UNC Charlotte or Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C." (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 9/11). THE MMQB's Peter King notes the Bucs will see if it is "feasible to practice in Tampa for their home game next Sunday," or whether they will go to New Orleans or The Greenbrier in West Virginia to practice (SI.com, 9/11).