When the Oakland Raiders play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this Sunday, Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio would like to have a home field advantage.
There’s just one problem – the game is at Tampa Bay.
Luckily for the Raiders, their fan base travels better than most and Del Rio is hoping that they’ll travel to the east coast for this latest game. He even challenged Raider fans to take over Raymond James Stadium this Sunday.
“They’re a big presence,” Del Rio said of the large numbers of Raiders fans who tend to travel to road games. “We really appreciate their support. They do a tremendous job.
“Our fans travel. Wherever we’ve been thus far, they’ve been there in large numbers and I think it’ll be the same. Come on out Raider Nation. We’re excited about it.”
Del Rio’s challenge is most certainly in response to Bucs’ coach Dirk Koetter urging Tampa Bay fans to not sell their tickets to Raider fans earlier this week. The Bucs have been dismal at home – winning just three of their past 18 home games – so fans are clearly growing impatient with the poor home field play and Koetter is worried that it will create a perfect storm with the Raiders and their fan base coming to town.
“I’m 1,000 percent aware that the more you win, the better it gets,” Koetter said. “But with that said, do we have a home field advantage? That’s our job to create it.”
The Buccaneers (3-3) host the Raiders (5-2) on Sunday with kickoff set for 1:00 PM EST.