This week, the NFL released its schedules for the 2019 season. Two franchises in particular have very legitimate gripes.
The Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers each have six week periods where they won’t play a true home game. The stretches feature four road games, a “home” game in London, and a bye.
The teams are set to draft fourth and fifth in the upcoming NFL Draft, respectively, so clearly neither was in a position entering 2019 where they can likely withstand that type of crazy stretch. Oakland is also in a precarious position, as they are entering a lame duck year as tenants in the city it is leaving.
The Raiders are set to move to Las Vegas in 2020.
Here are how those six-week stretches for the Raiders and Buccaneers play out:
Week 3 (Sept. 22): at Minnesota Vikings
Week 4 (Sept. 29): at Indianapolis Colts
Week 5 (Oct. 6): vs. Chicago Bears (London)
Week 6: Bye
Week 7 (Oct. 20): at Green Bay Packers
Week 8 (Oct. 27): at Houston Texans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
Week 4 (Sept. 29): at Los Angeles Rams
Week 5 (Oct. 6): at New Orleans Saints
Week 6 (Oct. 13): vs. Carolina Panthers (London)
Week 7: Bye
Week 8 (Oct. 27): at Tennessee Titans
Week 9 (Nov. 3): at Seattle Seahawks
If it is any consolation, the NFL knows it messed up here.
Per USA Today, NFL Vice President of Broadcasting Michael North admits he’d like a “redo” on the Raiders and Bucs schedules:
“This is one that the NFL would love to have back. It’s certainly not unusual for an NFL team to have one home game over a six-week stretch,” NFL vice president of broadcasting Michael North told USA TODAY Sports on Thursday evening. “But when that one home (game) isn’t actually home, this is likely something that the NFL would seek to avoid in the future.
“I’d love a redo on that one.”
Other teams have similar stretches, but host an actual home game in the six week stretch, rather than a trip to London. Hopefully the NFL has this figured out for 2020-21.