No Change: Bears will face the Bucs in Tampa on Sunday

TAMPA – While football was the least of the concerns for many as Hurricane Irma made its way through Florida this past weekend, there were some that wondered about the fate of the Bears’ second game of the season.

The storm was on a collision course with the Tampa area, site of the team’s game with the Buccaneers this coming Sunday. After all, the host’s game with the Dolphins was already called off due to the storm.

But after Irma passed, it was determined that the game will go on after all.

On Monday the Buccaneers announced that the game with the Bears this Sunday will be played at noon as scheduled at Raymond James Stadium.

“We have been working tirelessly with the Tampa Sports Authority, as well as the NFL league office, to ensure that Raymond James Stadium would be available to host our season opener against the Chicago Bears this Sunday.” said Buccaneers Chief Operating Officer Brian Ford in a release from the team. “Hosting the game is important to us, as Tampa Bay has been through a lot over the past few days.

“We look forward to providing our fans and the entire region an opportunity to come together this Sunday to kick off our 2017 season.”

If there had been damage to the stadium or the area, the game could have been postponed or moved to a neutral site.

Ironically, this decision has an effect on former Bears and Bucs coach Lovie Smith. His Illinois team is facing USF this Friday and they also call Raymond James Stadium home and since the NFL’s game wasn’t cancelled, the Illini’s will be played as scheduled.