The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be the first team in NFL history to play in a Super Bowl at its home stadium when the squad competes in Super Bowl LV in Tampa against the Kansas City Chiefs.
But how much of an advantage will Tampa Bay actually have?
In terms of a vocal crowd that’s primarily pro-Buccaneers, probably not much of an advantage at all.
Due to restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the game will be the lowest-attended Super Bowl ever, and by a wide margin.
The National Football League has capped attendance at about 22,000, which is roughly one-third of the 65,890 capacity of the stadium.
The NFL is also giving away 7,500 of those tickets to vaccinated health care workers, so there only will be 14,500 ticket-buying fans in the stadium, who can be from all over the country.
The game will no doubt shatter the record for the lowest-attended Super Bowl, a distinction that’s been held by Super Bowl I in Los Angeles, which had a crowd of 61,946.
Not surprisingly, the prices for the limited number of tickets are at a record high.
The cheapest tickets as of Jan. 26 were $6,340, according to StubHub.
In contrast, the average cost of a ticket to last year’s Super Bowl in Miami that had a stadium at full capacity was $3,488, according to the Sporting News.
So while the Buccaneers are indeed playing at home, unless it’s only locals in Tampa who have thousands of dollars lying around to spend for the limited number of tickets, there likely won’t be the edge in crowd noise they would have had, if they were to have advanced to the game under normal circumstances.