Tom Brady and the Buccaneers could make NFL history this year if they can beat the Packers on Sunday. If that happens, the Buccaneers would become the first team ever to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium.
The Super Bowl has existed for 54 years and in that time, no team has ever gotten to play the game in their home stadium. The fact that the Buccaneers are even in the NFC title game is notable because that's something that almost never happens. You can call it a Super Bowl hosting jinx or just bad luck, but teams almost never make the playoffs in a season where they're hosting the Super Bowl. Including the Buccaneers, there have only been nine instances in NFL history where a team made the playoffs in a season where their stadium was hosting the Super Bowl.
Of the host teams that made the postseason -- the Dolphins (1970, '78, '94, '98), Buccaneers (2000), Cardinals (2014), Texans (2016), and Vikings (2017) -- only one of them has ever made it to the conference title game and that's the Vikings, who beat the Saints to advance to the NFC Championship in 2017, where they would lose to the Eagles. The Buccaneers became the second team to reach the NFC title game by also beating the Saints.
Before this year, the eight Super Bowl hosts that made the postseason had a record of 3-8 in the playoffs during the season where the big game was being held at their stadium.
If the Buccaneers are going to end the Super Bowl-hosting jinx, they simply have to do something that they've already accomplished this year: Beat the Packers. Back in Week 6, the Buccaneers destroyed Green Bay 38-10 in a game that was played at home. This time around, the Buccaneers are going to have to win at Lambeau Field.
In a twist, if the Buccaneers do win, they'd become the first wild-card team to make it to the Super Bowl since the Packers did it in 2010. A win over Green Bay would also mean that the Buccaneers' first home game of the postseason would come in the Super Bowl. The Bucs opened up postseason play at Washington and then won in New Orleans.
Although no team has ever played a Super Bowl in their home stadium, two teams did get to play the Super Bowl in their home market. After spending the season at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Rams made it to Super Bowl XIV, which was played at the nearby Rose Bowl. Being close to home didn't actually help the Rams though, as they lost 31-19 to the Steelers.
The only other team that got to play close to home was the 1984 San Francisco 49ers. In Super Bowl XIX, the 49ers beat the Dolphins 38-16 in a game that was played at Stanford Stadium, which was less than 30 miles away from their old home at Candlestick Park.