Bucs Blow Up Thursday Night Road CurseOctober 26th, 2012
Yeah, Joe’s a Bucs guy first, and a football guy second.
For years, Joe’s weekends during the fall started on Thursday nights. Then, with ESPN broadcasting college football games, Joe often found himself parked on his favorite barstool, cold beer in hand.
After years of watching Thursday night football, it became clear that home teams often had a major advantage over visiting teams.
Usually, visiting teams (in college) would have four practices (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and an abbreviated Wednesday film/walk-through session) and the team would fly out.
Home teams often got an extra day in, using Thursday afternoon for film study and/or walk-throughs.
As a result, visiting teams noticeably had a devil of a time to try to win.
This seemed to carry over to NFL games on Thursday evenings; visiting teams may get in three practices only. And it showed.
This season, home teams were 5-1 entering the Bucs-Vikings game. And the Bucs deficated all over that Thursday hex.
Using a bruising defense, a stubborn run game and a sparkling passing game, the Bucs slammed the Vikings for a 36-17 win and, for now, put to rest the wives tale of Thursday night road games, writes Jim Souhan of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
By the time the drunks were finished with their fights in the stands, black-and-blue described the Vikings’ bruised psyches, not their style of play.
“They did a good job of just coming out and beating our brains in,” defensive end Brian Robison said. “It’s Football 101.”
Looking back on it, the game largely was just that: a back-alley brawl. It was physical, nasty yet not dirty, tough. Yards were gained by brute force and paid for in pain.
The Bucs came in and punched the Vikings in the mouth and served notice to the NFL: with a 3-4 record, this team isn’t shutting down any time soon.