Tampa Gets Bad Ranking As NFL Game Destination

July 12th, 2021

Why put valuable time into crafting a list for fans when it’s so misguided?

Longtime Boston Globe NFL/Patriots writer Ben Volin did just that in an exercise that ranked the best-to-worst destinations for traveling NFL fans.

The home of our beloved Buccaneers landed in the bottom half of the league, wedged between Cleveland (No. 16) and Jacksonville (No. 18).

17. Tampa: Everything is spread out, it’s a lot of strip malls and chain stores, and traffic in and out of the stadium can be a pain. But, it’s Florida. The Gulf is beautiful, Bern’s cooks a mean steak, and Buccaneers tickets aren’t too hard to come by.

How Buffalo (No. 5) and Arizona (N0. 14) were ahead of the Tampa Bay’s home turf is hard to fathom. Joe’s seen the Bucs in both locations. And there’s so much more to Tampa than a steakhouse and strip malls.

Joe has a firm hunch that The Licht House will be buzzing all season, tickets will be hard find, and most intelligent visiting fans in for the Bills-Bucs game won’t want to move back home.


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48 Responses to “Tampa Gets Bad Ranking As NFL Game Destination”

  1. Leighroy Says:

    I stopped reading at “Boston Globe.” DGAF what they have to say!

  2. AlV Says:

    Bern’s steakhouse is the most overrated piece of trash place. I’d rather be at Charley’s or Ruth Chris’s any day over Bern’s. It’s just a tourist attraction.

  3. Beeej Says:

    They failed to mention the titty bars. Tampa has the world’s best titty bars

  4. Mort Says:

    Yeah, the real Tampa steakhouse is Outback anyway!


  5. ninety9buc Says:

    What a joke!!
    This dude is just hating because of the obvious.
    (New England sports writer. Of course he has us @ 17)

    Where does Foxboro rank?

    Let me guess top 5?

  6. AMI_Chris Says:

    Tampa’s great. They can eff right off.

  7. Gofortheface30 Says:

    But the thing is, reporters generally aren’t going to know about beach drive in st Pete, they aren’t going to know about channelside, or Hyde park village etc etc. I was born and raised here in Tampa so anyone disagrees then frankly this is MY city and not yours because chances are you’re just a fugazi that moved here 5yrs ago like every other clown here nowadays, but I digress. In any case if we’re being objective here, Dale Mabry sucks ok. It sucks. It’s not fantastic around ray jay. That’s what the writers are talking about. They aren’t talking about the cities or how cool it is to live, they’re just talking about game day experience and what’s around the stadium which isn’t much. No pubs, no cool bars or restaurants, and the Bucs fans aren’t really known for tailgate parties. It is what it is, no need to be too butt hurt over the article because frankly it isn’t wrong in that regard

  8. ModHairKen Says:

    Green Bay ahead of Tampa? Boring. And what is the charm in sitting on aluminum bleachers. The guy actually touted that. And Buffalo? Has anyone actually ever been to Buffalo? It ain’t that grand.

  9. Destinjohnny Says:

    No MV??
    That’s our Graceland/bourbon street

  10. Bojim Says:

    He’s a Patriots fan. Isn’t it obvious?

  11. Medicated Pete Says:

    Hey Ben, it’s close enough to the airport so you can leave town immediately you BOZO

  12. Alanbucsfan Says:

    You really have to experience Pinellas County to appreciate ALL of Tampa Bay and because of the location of RayJay, many in the media limit their Pinellas experiences to Clearwater Beach or Tropicana Field.

  13. Defense Rules Says:

    Just found Ben Volin’s complete list on the Boston Globe site and although it’s shaky in spots, it’s just one writer’s OPINION. There are certainly a number of rankings that I would’ve changed (like he ranked Miami #3? Really?). But if I did, it’d then be MY OPINION. Nothing more; nothing less.

    Strange thing seems to be that his write-up for Tampa uses criteria that don’t seem to show up in many others. For instance, “traffic in & out of the stadium can be a pain”. Really? I’d venture to say that EVERY NFL stadium has that same issue. And as far as everything being “spread out” goes, why is that a bad thing in his eyes?

    And BTW ninety9buc, he ranks Foxboro #20, 3 spots below Tampa. Anyone who’s ever been to a game in Foxboro would probably say that’s way too high. Traffic in & out of the stadium is FAR WORSE than it is in Tampa, and Foxboro itself is just a little town. Kinda spread out too.

    Bottom line: just another article that was a waste of time reading. Such is life.

  14. DaBux Says:

    Screw them. We have boat parades. Arizona has dirt devils and Buffalo builds snowmen in empty stadiums every February.

  15. Aceofaerospace Says:

    No mention of The Odyssey?

  16. BuccaneerButters Says:

    Nfl Patriots writer… Hmm, idk Joe, I would not listen to this guy’s opinion. He’s probably salty that Brady won our boys a championship while they’re praying Mac Jones will be decent.

  17. mg Says:

    Trollin Volin, its what he does and its old.

  18. DoooshLaRue Says:

    I’m a Florida native and have lived in most parts of the State.
    I’ve been a Bucs fan since 1976, but I gotta say…… Tampa ain’t all that.
    It is spread out, kinda trashy and no real downtown.
    I live an hour south and think it’s much, much better.

  19. Bojim Says:

    Who cares. We won.

  20. Steven007 Says:

    At least our stadium is actually in Tampa, you know the city it’s based in? I’ve traveled plenty to other stadiums. Most aren’t even in the cities the team represents. Washington’s stadium is awful and it’s located in the middle of nowhere. You tailgate in a giant asphalt parking lot that’s about a mile away. The Superdump is the most overrated piece of crap stadium in the NFL. Haven’t been to the new Atlanta stadium yet. Ravens have a decent spot. Honestly I think Tampa should be in the top 10.

  21. SB Says:

    LOL people will pick Anything to write about this time of year

  22. Joe Says:

    no real downtown.

    That’s changing pretty quick.

  23. Buc1987 Says:

    I’ve lived in lots of different cities and areas all over the country….Tampa to me has always been pretty lame compared to the places I’ve lived.

  24. Buc1987 Says:

    I’m actually shocked the area ranked so high.

  25. William Greenfield Says:

    LMAO. Sounds to me like a typical New Englander. He lists everything that is right with Tampa and proclaims it to be wrong. Tampa is spread out. Heck yes it is I love it. Sounds a little bit like sour grapes to me from a writer that is located in Boston. Boston Globe NFL/Patriots writer Ben Volin. Boston Bruins can not get passed Tampa Lightning. Historic Boston red sox lose to the Rays. New England patriots lose Tom Brady to Tampa Bay. So I need to ask. Why should any one care about the opinion of aome one who writes anything. Why would anyone care about my opinion or Volin or any other talking head. I sat to hell with their opinion and start reporting the facts

  26. unbelievable Says:

    Lol who cares? He’s not totally wrong, especially around Ray Jay.

    His description is actually pretty fitting for many cities in Florida. You have to know where the good stuff is, otherwise you would just see tons of chains / franchises in between strip malls, residential neighborhoods and golf courses.

  27. August 1976 Buc Says:

    Yeah I am sure all those frozen cities were thinking how bad it was in Tampa while they were watching clips of the Bucs Super Bowl Boat Parade in February with big grins on their faces lol

    The Tampa Bay area is one of the better places to live in the US.

  28. Anonymous Says:

    Haters will hate it’s in there nature. Please would you rather be in Buffalo freezing or In a land locked state Like Arizona Baking in the desert heat. There’s a reason nobody retires to Buffalo and if retirees have choices they will choose Florida 9 out of 10s over Arizona’s dry abysmal heat.

  29. Drunkinybor Says:

    Yet another reason I wish to return to my home city and state….Beeej Says:
    July 12th, 2021 at 6:37 pm
    They failed to mention the titty bars. Tampa has the world’s best titty bars

  30. Pine Hills Says:

    When I lived in Lakeland, and was 25 years younger I loved Mins Venous.
    Is it still there?

  31. Pine Hills Says:


  32. Buczilla Says:

    Hateful, ignorant, backward a$$ (certainly not all, but a fair amount) Eagles fans have had to live with the fact that we closed down their old field with a win and opened up their new one with a win, while also keeping them from a super bowl berth. Boston (I have had a blast every time I’ve gone, the food is awesome, and no issues with the folks there)fans have got to live with the fact that their team did little to keep the best football player ever, who went on to win a super bowl with us.

    Volin’s feelings are probably hurt and he’s gotta be frustrated by what went down. I feel sorry for him and Boston fans because I would be livid if it were the other way around. Screw his stupid list, I wouldn’t trade Fl for anywhere else.

  33. sasquatch Says:

    An urban center where one can wander on foot from one place to another, Tampa is not. He’s not wrong. It is spread out, and there are a ridiculous number of strip malls… Compared to other cities, it’s not a city. For people who can tolerate ridiculous head and humidity and getting in your car constantly, it’s fine.

  34. Jeff Says:

    Newspapers! LMAO!

  35. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    I guess people will pick Anything to write about this time of year.
    I would rank Tampa much higher as a place than #17.
    But then, he has ranked Miami #3, and that to me is just plain wrong.
    Plus, we have one of the nicest stadiums in the NFL.
    Some of my out of town friends who visit Tampa call it “The land of Titty Bars and Pawnshops” and remark about our traffic and all the Lawyer Ads, but almost all are impressed with our Stadium.

  36. Bucs53 Says:

    Complain all you want, but this is almost exactly what I hear from visiting fans at the games.

    It’s always a combination of “why is the stadium in such a crappy part of town,” and “why are your fans so boring?”

    They’re not wrong. The area was not built for any monetization of the fans, and the fans are so passive they won’t even stand and yell on a 3rd down. Here’s hoping winning has knocked some excitement into people, and here’s hoping the city finally clears out some strip clubs and massage parlors and builds that area into something better for game experience, but I won’t get my hopes up.

    Thank God at least the football is great.

  37. Bobby M. Says:

    I dont think the writer’s position is that far off if he stayed around the stadium but visitors generally are not coming to Tampa for a football game…..Our draw is Clearwater/St Pete or Sarasota. A visiting fan from an opposing team is here to watch their team but i would argue if they stay in the Water Street area at the JW/Marriot they will find plenty to do in that area with Uber making commuting pretty simple.

    Who cares…..lots of folks are bailing on their mega cities for Tampa so we must be doing something right.

  38. Eddie Marz Says:

    I guess when your isn’t ranked anymore, you have to rank the stadium. LMAO I’ll take The Bucs and let the Boston Globe keep the Patriots. GO BUCS!

  39. AMI_Chris Says:

    Tampa currently holds the #1 spot in the world for home-team fan satisfaction. When everything you buy from the Bucs and Bolts says “champion” on it, and people are streaming into your state, life is great!

  40. Tony Says:

    We need for our sports teams to stay good for awhile because we’ve watched everybody else have success for so long that it’s sucked for not oh the fans but I’m sure for the Bucs Rays & Lightning, too! Let everyone else sit behind them & deal with watching the area start to have success because the area has dealt with sucking for too long. People have no reason to complain about how many the area were to win because the area can win as many as it wants & everybody else have no reason to complain because the area has had to suffer with watching everybody else win everything every year.

  41. Tony Says:

    Not only that even Pete Alonso won the HR Derby again & he’s from the Tampa area, too!

  42. Mark Sobocienski Says:

    It seems he’s only ranking the experience based on the stadium and its immediate surroundings. If you rank by city as a whole I’m pretty sure 99% of people would rather go to Tampa than Green Bay or Buffalo. But for the 3 hours you are watching football, the atmosphere for a Packers game seems more intense than in Tampa.

  43. BA4President Says:

    Aren’t most NFL stadiums in “crappy” parts of towns? That’s where the affordable land is.

    I’ve only been to a 7 stadiums, but the only two weren’t in “crappy” parts of towns… Detroit and Baltimore – they felt dangerous, but not crappy haha

  44. Buc A+ Says:

    Maybe that yankee didn’t like it here. But people are taking trains, planes and automobiles to move here. Paradise is always close by.

  45. Bojim Says:

    But the strippers don’t have to wear pasties.

  46. Calvin J Says:

    Tampa bay isn’t great, I agree! Born and raised here, planning to move out of the state within in a year or two but don’t get me wrong I love our teams! But city not to much anymore, growth of population, traffic, not everyone have a boat to attend a “boat parade” plus our bay is full of sewage, red tide… etc you name it we got it in the water. The heat is so oppressive anymore. It not the same quiet, fun, best fishing town like it was in 30 years ago. It sad to see our beautiful city/nature of the actual Tampa Bay go downhill. It becoming like second Miami.

  47. Sol Says:

    If they thought it was bad before, just wait until after they leave this season, it’s going to be plum miserable. Uncomfortable is maximized by the beat down they’ll get.

  48. Cdizzle46 Says:

    I like cake