Tampa Bay Buccaneers train in Miami, discuss impact of Hurricane Ian; Minneapolis selected as emergency site for Sunday’s game

The team moved its football operations to Miami this week due to the impact Ian could have. It made landfall along the southwest Florida coast near Cayo Costa as a powerful Category 4 storm on Wednesday, but has now weakened to a Category 1 storm. It is the one of the strongest hurricanes to make landfall on the west coast of the Florida peninsula.

After training for the first time at the Miami Dolphins facility in Miami Gardens – the Dolphins traveled to Cincinnati where they will face the Bengals on Thursday – the Bucs’ players and coaching staff have spoken of the effect the storm had upon them and their families. .

“First of all, our thoughts and thoughts are with everyone in Tampa who is still here, hoping they recover well and this doesn’t hit them very hard,” said head coach Todd. Bowles to the media. “That’s the most important thing. What we’re doing is really a little entertainment for people who are going through a lot of tough stuff, and hopefully we can provide that.

“It’s bigger than just a football team, number one. Secondly, it’s just about making sure the families of the players are safe and the families of the coaches are safe and that all members staff are safe so they can focus on the football so we brought a lot of them here everyone who wanted to come could come family and others including pets we will first make sure these people are okay because you really can’t focus on football without taking care of your family.”

Thursday morning, hurricane and tropical storm warnings for South Florida were dropped as Hurricane Ian moves further north, according to an update from the National Hurricane Center. The storm remains at Category 1 with sustained winds of up to 75 mph.
Bucs running back Leonard Fournette, born in New Orleans, Louisiana, remembered the impact and devastation of Hurricane Katrina when it hit the Gulf Coast in 2005 and cost life to 1,833 people.

“I went through Katrina when I was a kid,” Fournette said. “I know how serious and serious this is…I think the Bucs have done a great job evacuating everyone, making sure everyone and the families are okay. And I hope you are. good too, it looks like some of you are home. But I just know how it is…and I thank God that we went out there and we’re just praying for the families up there in Tampa.”

For star linebacker Devin White, he has more than just his house to take care of. The 24-year-old also has a stable full of horses to look after.

“I guess you just have to pray, but I think my barn is more expensive than my house,” White said when asked how he plans to keep his horses safe. “So I think my barn for…that kind of stuff, hopefully nothing gets too close…I just looked at the cameras and I’ve got somebody working in the barn who stayed behind, so, hopefully everyone they’re just safe and we could just move on from that.”

The Bucs train at Miami Gardens.

Emergency plan

The Bucs were set to host Sunday’s Week 4 clash with the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, but Ian’s lingering impact led the NFL to select US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis as the venue. emergency if the match were to be moved.

The stadium, home to the Minnesota Vikings, is not expected to be used on Sunday as the Vikings travel to London to take on the New Orleans Saints at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

“It’s standard procedure, as you know, for us to have contingency plans in place and to identify other NFL venues that could possibly host a game in a given week if necessary. And if so, if the hurricane necessitates a change of venue,” NFL executive vice president Jeff Miller said Wednesday. “It’s only a possibility, but we will remain agile and adaptable.”

A general view of US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

White said if it was safe, he would like to face the Chiefs in front of the Bucs home crowd, mainly because of the “energy” the Bucs players feed on.

“I would like it to be a home game just because…it’s one of our night games,” he said. “I don’t know how many we have, but I like it in front of our fans, especially against a good team like this.

“You really need it, the fans on your side… to help you get that momentum in the game and feed you the energy. But I mean whatever it is, I think safety comes first… The game of football doesn’t really matter when it comes to people’s lives… people in the community are affected by something like that.”


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