Front Rows May Be Tarped

June 25th, 2020

Radical seating changes proposed

At least for the 2020 season, if you have seats located in the first eight rows of the lower bowl of the Den of Depression for Bucs games, you may not any longer (perhaps only for this season).

In an effort to try to build up extra cash flow to make up for the coming projected drop in revenue this season, the NFL has told teams they can tarp off the first eight rows of stadium seats and sell the tarp for corporate signage sponsorships.

The location is significant because the sponsorships would be in the sight lines of TV viewers. Think ads behind home plate in baseball.

In other words, it’s like a Rays game in reverse. At the Fruitdome, the Rays have the upper deck tarped. At the Den of Depression, in theory, the first handful of rows may be tarped.

Of course the Bucs have not announced any such plans but why wouldn’t a team do this given the opportunity? Ben Fischer of Sports Business Daily broke the news late Wednesday.

NFL teams have been told they’ll be able to sell camera-visible signage to local sponsors for the first time during the ’20 season, sources said, a step one sales executive said would “significantly” defray pandemic-related revenue losses.

Under a plan shared with team presidents on Tuesday, the first six to eight rows of seating in every stadium — including on-field suites — will be off limits to fans this season. That move is officially to protect players, coaches and team staff from coronavirus exposure, but it would also free up that space to become lucrative sponsorship assets.

Sources said those seats will be covered by tarps that could include sponsor logos, similar to how EPL teams repurposed empty seating sections for ads during its return to play last week. The plan will be presented to owners at a meeting tomorrow. An NFL spokesman did not reply to a request for comment.

The catch here, per Fisher, would be if the local sponsor would conflict with a national NFL sponsor. For example, Coke wouldn’t be able to buy signage because of the conflict it has with Pepsi, a national NFL sponsor.

Currently, the NFL only allows a handful of sponsors to be seen within 40 feet of the playing surface. Bose, Gatorade and Microsoft are some of the few and they are all within team bench areas.

Fisher adds that teams have been “clamoring” with the league to loosen up the sponsor regulations to help defray the amount of kickbacks teams are expected to funnel back to local sponsors in the event stadiums are reconfigured with social distancing guidelines, or worse, empty stadiums.

For Bucs fans that own tickets in the first eight rows of the Den of Depression, you may want to give your Bucs ticket rep a call this morning to find out where you are now sitting, if you will be sitting in the stadium at all.

26 Responses to “Front Rows May Be Tarped”

  1. Pryda...sec147 Says:

    Best believe I WILL be calling my rep first thing in the AM! This is upsetting… but then again they’ll probably not have anyone in the stands.

  2. Says:

    That sucks, I am in row A!

  3. Jerry Jones Says:

    That call should’ve been made a long time ago, but I get your meaning as well Joe.

  4. JH Says:

    This makes no sense. These are one of the highest value seats in the stadium and I would guess the vast majority belonging to season ticket holders. I call BS on player safety. I’m sure there will be attorneys involved if this is how the NFL decides to play this out.

  5. Stanglassman Says:

    This reminds me of when they switched to the new stadium. My family had 8 seats since ‘76 on the 43-47 yard line 11 rows up and when we got our new seats they were on the 35 yard line 35 rows up. They sold a huge chuck of the premium seats to new corporate clients. Those people in the first 8 rows will never get their seats back. They can do it, it’s all in the fine print.

  6. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Looking forward to seeing the JBF logo……

  7. Go Bucs 72 Says:

    Whatever it takes so we can have football this year, I’m all for it.

  8. El Buco Realisto Says:

    They need to remove everything that is non-essential for this to have any chance to work!!!!!!!!! Next, they will consider having just a cardboard cut out of ole stale biscuit on the sidelines!!!!!!!!! It would actually help, as ole stale biscuit, would not be bumbling and getting in the way!!!!!!!!!!!

    go bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Bird Says:

    Yah. Thats me too

    (Although i dont think they will have fans in stands This year)

    Why not let them get advertising on jerseys like soccer does?

  10. Bird Says:

    By the way ….whatever happened to “hehateme”

  11. The Coroner Says:

    I have 4 seats since ‘76 also. We got moved too. Tickets that long should be moved on a priority based on ticket #

  12. TampaTown Says:

    I wonder how bad the sickness will be after the election.

  13. Bucpower 813 Says:

    Let’s just make sure KOVID doesn’t make the whole season go away…

  14. FanSince85 Says:

    Seat on Row X…so not impacted. Still, I think this is all wildly overblown…and living life in fear is no way to live life. After the election, all of this craziness will go away pretty quickly, I think. EVERYTHING these days is about the election. Amazing how the sickness stats and fear mongering seem to align by the political affililiatation of different states.

    Sickness does not appear to be a big deal in terms of mortality. Horrible for families that are impacted, but no different, really, than a bad flu.

  15. Jim Says:

    Look for permanent changes like this after Covid.

  16. HYD Says:

    You’re delusional if you think there will be fans in the stands this season. At this point here’s to hoping that there is an actual season.

  17. HYD Says:

    TampaTown Says:
    June 25th, 2020 at 8:41 am
    I wonder how bad the sickness will be after the election.

    Easy answer guy. It will be much worse if the US keeps its same trajectory.

  18. Cobraboy Says:

    Row 9 is now the premium bomb…

    My seats were in row CC, section 114.

  19. BucEmUp Says:

    Which makes absolutley zeron sense being that those are rhe hottest seats in the house

  20. bojim Says:

    As long as they play, I’m for it.

  21. Seminole Bill Says:

    It is ridiculous that the NFL owners are even considering having fans in the stands this fall. Putting even 20,000 fans in RayJay on a Sunday risks exposing those fans to the virus. Masks? It is hot in Florida in September; those masks will come off before the end of the first quarter, and people will congregate in the air conditioning to get away from the heat.

    I’ve been a season ticket holder for 12 years; I treasure game days but let’s be sensible. Play this season on TV only.

  22. stpetebucsfan Says:

    “I wonder how bad the sickness will be after the election.”

    That kind of post makes me think you don’t really care you already “feel” your answer. And it surely must be correct in light of some “alternate facts”.

    Meanwhile you get to choose. Scientists? Epidemiologists? Doctors?

    Or the man and his acolytes who told us this was a Democratic hoax, that it would disappear one day overnight..a miracle. That this restart is without danger and you don’t need no stinkin’ masks.

    It’s YOUR choice who to believe. Perhaps…doubtful…you might have a clue that I prefer science and doctors and experts.

    As Roger Waters and Pink Floyd once pointed out however some folks have different ideas.

    We don’t need no education
    We dont need no thought control

  23. Joe Says:

    Looking forward to seeing the JBF logo……

    Ha! Joe doesn’t have nearly that kind of bread.

  24. D1 Says:

    St pete,

    If the number of infected individuals was not 2mil…..but say 20mil….death rate unchanged…..what if any impact would that have on your opinion?

  25. mark2001 Says:

    St. Pete… what’s the problem? Ten cases, five cases, one case….all gone. RIP.

  26. unbelievable Says:

    Ugh please no advertising on Jerseys, that looks Cheap and atrocious.