I have something to admit. I can't stand the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It's not just because of the NFCCG loss to them either. I hate everything they are about. Let me elaborate.
Of all the stupid, hokey things sports teams do around the country, none is more hokey, childish, and silly than the "pirate ship" in Raymond James stadium. Seriously, is it Disneyland or is a football game going on? It could not be less intimidating and make for a more kiddie amusement park atmosphere. This is how they describe the "scary" pirate ship... "The most menacing aspect of the pirate ship is its massive 9'x7' skull and crossed swords facing the playing field which features huge, glowing red eyes and a mouth that breathes smoke." Yeah, that's real menacing... anything designed for 5 year olds to giggle and clap at forfeits the right to call itself "menacing".
If the Eagles erected a big ferris wheel at the Linc, would that intimidate teams? When did a football stadium cease being a place where adults could drink, yell, blow off steam and root on their team... and start being Disney World?
What's worse, it doesn't stop with just the silly fake boat. The entire stadium is basically a kiddie amusement park. Many of the places to eat and concourses are themed with palm trees and fake pirate props to look like "Pirates of the Carribean". For instance, when they are hungry or need to pee, Tampa fans can frolic through the delightful "Buccaneer Cove", which features a weathered, two-story fishing village facade! I can hear Vince Lombardi rolling around in his grave... Is this really what a once gritty, tough game played in the rain and snow by real men has come to?
Why not just rename the team the Mighty Ducks?
This stadium is the self proclaimed "crown jewel of the National Football League?" A kiddie amusment park is supposed to be the standard that all NFL stadiums are held to? Please. Make no mistake about it, this is the worst stadium in all of the NFL.
The funniest part of it all is that's it so representative of what the city of Tampa really is. A big retirement community for the grandparents of those of us in the Northeast. It's bad that the Yankees are more popular in Tampa than the city's own baseball team... What a great sports town huh? Everyone roots for the team from their real home and then gets to take grandkids out for some good, clean family fun at ole Raymond Jame stadium! I wonder whether the grandkids spend more time playing on the "menacing" pirate ship or watching the actual game?