By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — Tom Brady no longer plays for the Patriots. But plenty of Patriots fans are still keenly interested in how No. 12 plays every weekend this coming fall.
Fortunately, those fans won’t have to spring for any extra satellite subscriptions or extra TVs in order to keep an eye on old Tommy Boy.
That’s because the NFL is all in on Tompa Bay fever, based on the 2020 schedule for the Buccaneers.
The Bucs will be playing in five prime-time games on national television, and they’ll also be playing in the 4:25 p.m. ET national window four additional times. That’s more than half the season of Brady and the Bucs being easily available for viewing in New England.
Even better: Patriots fans won’t have to deal with the Patriots and Buccaneers playing at the same time until Week 15. There are no schedule conflicts until that late in the season, when the Patriots visit Miami and the Bucs visit Atlanta, with both games at 1 p.m. ET. The only other conflict comes two weeks later, when the Bucs host the Falcons and the Patriots host the Jets, again with both games at 1 p.m. ET.
As an added bonus, the scheduler makers have built a whopper of a day for football fans in New England in Week 7. The Patriots will be welcoming Jimmy Garoppolo and the defending NFC-champion San Francisco 49ers to Gillette at 4:25 p.m. ET. Shortly after that game ends, Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski will be on national TV in Las Vegas to play the Raiders.
That ought to be a wonderful Sunday in late October.
Buccaneers Prime-Time Schedule, 2020:
Week 5, at Chicago, Thursday Night Football
Week 7, at Las Vegas, Sunday Night Football
Week 8, at New York Giants, Monday Night Football
Week 9, vs. New Orleans, Sunday Night Football
Week 11, vs. Los Angeles Rams, Monday night Football
Overall, the Buccaneers are only scheduled to play at 1 p.m. on Sundays six times, and only two of those six will be taking place at the same time as a Patriots game.
So, if you were hoping to split your focus between the hometown team and the GOAT, you won’t have to stress too hard to get it done.