MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A day after announcing that the Miami Dolphins would not be hosing their Week 1 game against the Tampa Bay Bucs on Sunday, a decision has been made as to when the game will be played.
The league will be moving the game to the teams’ shared bye during Week 11 and it will be played at Hard Rock Stadium.
The date of the game is now Sunday, November 19.
Both Miami and Tampa Bay will now be playing 16 consecutive weeks of football, something that has not been done since the bye week was re-introduced in 1990. It had previously been utilized until 1966.
Several players were asked about the possibility of playing sixteen weeks in a row without a week off to rest. The idea was not a popular one in Miami’s locker room.
“Sixteen weeks straight?” Dolphins receiver Jarvis Landry said Tuesday. “Listen, it’s a long season. It’s a long season, and I think the stretch after our bye week is probably one of the toughest – if you want to be real about it – probably the toughest in the NFL. That bye week will give us an opportunity to kind of get some guys healthy. In this NFL, in the league, you’re going to get banged up week in, week out. For us, that bye week, it comes at an appropriate time. For us, to keep it there would be huge; but I know there are unfortunate situations and it’s out of our hands and it’s up to the NFL and the teams to decide what happens; but we could use that bye at that time.”
Several options were discussed over the past several days, including playing the game at an earlier date and moving it to a neutral location.
Clearly the teams and league decided that the best option was postponing the game. With the threat of Hurricane Irma, currently a powerful Category 5, looming over Florida and the Caribbean, players are now able to focus on their families and homes.
The forecast has Irma impacting South Florida over the weekend, with wind and rain expected to arrive as early as Friday.
The Dolphins cancelled practice for the rest of the week and it is unclear when players will be asked to return to the team’s Davie facility.
The postponement means the Dolphins will not begin the season until Sunday, September 17 against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Miami’s first home game will now take place on Sunday, October 8 against the Tennessee Titans.