The NFL is calling for a ceasefire by the Buccaneers as we inch closer to Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium. Despite this rare instance where Tampa Bay will be playing a home game as they make a bid for their second Lombardi Trophy in franchise history, it won't exactly be a full-fledged home-field advantage. In an attempt to keep this "neutral site" game as even as possible for both the Bucs and Cheifs, the league is not allowing Tampa Bay to fire the cannons from their famed pirate ship after touchdowns and big plays.
"The firing of the cannons after big plays is a tradition that defines what it means to be a Buccaneer fan and serves as a signature element of our home game experience at Raymond James Stadium," the team said in a statement released on Tuesday. "However, we also acknowledge and understand the NFL's position with regards to maintaining the integrity of a neutral site atmosphere for Super Bowl LV. While the cannons may not fire in their typical fashion, we look forward to showcasing parts of our tradition while working within the league's guidelines."
This is the first time in NFL history that any club has managed to reach the Super Bowl in the same year that their stadium will host the big game, so it appears like the league is trying to clear a few unique hoops prior to kickoff. While that may take some of the quirky shine away from this rare happenstance, the league is simply trying to keep this game as down-the-middle as possible to maintain some semblance of neutrality.
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The Buccaneers are technically the home team for this Super Bowl, but it has nothing to do with the fact that they are in their own building. It merely has to do with it being the NFC's turn as both conferences alternate who will be the home team each year. That really is only significant as it relates to picking what jersey they want to wear. Everything else -- logos on the field, endzone paintings, etc. -- will all be designed from a neutral standpoint.
Of course, if the Bucs do end up defeating Kansas City and win the Super Bowl, there will certainly be plenty of opportunities to set those cannons off in the days and weeks to follow.