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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Summer Games

The NFL has released its full 2005 preseason schedule, which has the Bucs facing Tennessee, Jacksonville, Miami and Houston


RB Michael Pittman and the Bucs finished their 2004 preseason against Houston, too

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be taking a tour of the South this August.

The AFC South, that is.

While the regular-season schedule is likely still a few weeks away from release, the NFL has released the 2005 preseason slate. The Buccaneers, who reside in the NFC South Division, will play three of their four preseason games against opponents from their sister division in the AFC.

In fact, it's a completely AFC affair for the Bucs, who will play Tennessee, Jacksonville and Houston from the AFC South plus their most common preseason opponent, Miami.

Though specific dates for the four games have not been announced, the preseason will start for most teams during the Week of August 11-15. A majority of the teams will play on Saturday, August 13. That weekend, the Bucs will travel to Tennessee to kick their 2005 season off against the Titans.

Week Two of the preseason runs from August 18-22, with Saturday again being the most common day for games. The Bucs will return home to play host to their upstate rivals, the Jaguars, that weekend.

The Bucs will stay in Florida for Weeks Three and Four, traveling to Miami and then coming back to finish the preseason with a home game against the Texans. Week Three games will be played during August 25-29, while all Week Four games will fall on September 1 or 2. Many teams schedule their final preseason games on a Friday night.

Here's a look at the Bucs' 2005 preseason opponents. Specific dates and times will follow later this spring.

2005 Preseason Schedule

DateOpponentPreseason Series
Week 1 (August 11-15)at TennesseeTampa Bay leads 5-1
Week 2 (August 18-22)JACKSONVILLETampa Bay leads 2-1
Week 3 (August 25-29)at MiamiMiami leads 12-7
Week 4 (September 1-2)HOUSTONTampa Bay leads 3-0

The Bucs will be finishing their preseason against the Texans for the fourth straight year. The four game series has alternated between Houston and Tampa, with the Bucs winning each time. Houston's last trip to Raymond James Stadium resulted in a 34-3 Buccaneer win on Aug. 28, 2003.

Tampa Bay has also played Jacksonville for four consecutive years, winning two of the last three matchups.

The Bucs and Dolphins almost always include each other on their preseason slates, meeting 19 times over the past 29 years. They have played each other 10 times in the past 10 summers, squaring off twice in 1996 and in every other year except 1999. Miami leads the all-time series, 12-7, though Tampa Bay has won the last three.

The NFL's preseason actually begins on August 6, when Atlanta and Indianapolis meet in the American Bowl in Tokyo. Miami and Chicago will also play an extra game, as they are the combatants in the Hall of Fame Game, to be played in Canton, Ohio, on August 8.

Eleven preseason games will be broadcast on national TV, beginning with the two games mentioned above. ABC, FOX, CBS and ESPN will then televise nine games over the first three preseason weeks. All four Buccaneers games will be aired locally by WFLA-TV, Channel 8.

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