Hey Bucs fans: that hearty chuckle coming from across the peninsula sounds distinctly like the false sympathies of Jaguars Nation. Tampa Bay is 9,000 tickets short of avoiding a season-opening blackout, the PR calamity once associated with cross-state Jacksonville.There's still time, but not much: the team has until 4:25 p.m. Thursday to avoid the blackout, which would keep the Bucs' opening game against Carolina off of TV anywhere in a 75-mile radius.
Not only are the Bucs short, but they're short with the new league policy of allowing 85 percent capacity to nullify a blackout:
The Bucs were among only a few teams that elected to take the league's offer of selling 85 percent of the general seats -- about 44,000 -- in order meet the requirements for a sellout at RJS under the NFL's modified guidelines.
The Tampa Bay Times is also reporting that discounted tickets will go for as low as $15, which should at least momentarily halt all jokes about the London Jaguars on the west side of the state.