Nick Carter celebrates a Buccaneer victory (Photo via Instagram)
Through platinum records, up-and-down seasons and even a Super Bowl, Nick Carter has always bled red and pewter. The Backstreet Boy is one of the Buccaneers' most outspoken fans, whether it be on social media or in interviews. He's been interviewed by PewterReport.com, and over the past week was featured on NFL Network's Good Morning Football and was a guest on the Pewter Report and What the Buc podcast where he discussed his love for the Bucs and the team's upcoming game against the Cowboys.
How Carter, a native New Yorker, came to be a Buccaneer fan is an interesting story.
"I was six years old – we moved down from upstate New York around the Buffalo area," Carter said.
"(I was around ten years old) when I really started to support the Bucs back in the creamsicle days. It started because my dad went to The Sombrero and was handing out some of the flyers and stuff during the games, so he brought some of that stuff back home. I'll never forget seeing the team and I just fell in love with them."
Carter's passion for the team, and career as an entertainer, was catapulted when he had the opportunity to perform for fans during the Bucs' halftime shows in the early 1990s, a memory he holds onto fondly.
"When I started the entertainment business, there was a dance school called Karl and DeMarco," Carter said. "What I did was I went to dance class there and Sandy Karl was actually the cheerleader coach (with the Buccaneers). During the Sombrero days, they would do the halftime show and I became a part of the halftime show. I don't even know if there's footage or pictures. When I was like 11 or 12 years old I was preforming the halftimes at The Sombrero. I'll never forget it. It's a part of me, it always has been and that's why I'm really passionate."
Carter resides on the West Coast, but makes it to games at Raymond James Stadium as frequently as possible. He promised to be in attendance should the Buccaneers host a playoff game.
"If we make it to the playoffs I'm going to be there with bells, whistles," Carter said. "I will be the craziest looking mascot you'll ever see."
The first step towards a playoff birth is defeating the Cowboys, who currently hold the No. 1 seed in the NFC. Tampa Bay will meet Dallas in primetime on Sunday night, and Carter, who will be on a ski trip during the game, will tune in through NFL Sunday ticket or by going incognito at a local sports bar. He said he is superstitious and doesn't like to make predictions, but knows this is a big game for the city and the franchise.
"This is our time to evolve and to make that step," he said. "I just hope that we can shut down the running game of the Cowboys because if we can eliminate that and make them sort of one-dimensional (then we can) make them put it on the pass and put it on the secondary. I think if we can get pressure up front, which I feel like was one of our strengths - stopping the run, if we can do that then we can command the game and we can keep it to a low score. I'd like to see an old-fashion Bucs score. That's what I'd like to see. Hard-nosed football. We love Evans, we love Jameis and we want to see him throw it but we want to win this game. The statement is: win it, play hard-nosed football, grind it, pound it and dominate the time of possession. I want to have control of the game. I think that if we can do that, we're going to win."
To listen to the full interview, click HERE.