Due to the threat of Hurricane Irma, the NFL is postponing Sunday’s game between the Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium.
The Dolphins were to have hosted the Buccaneers for a week one matchup on Sunday, kicking off the regular season for both teams. That matchup has now been postponed, and will is slated to be played at Hard Rock Stadium in week 11 .
Before making the decision to postpone the game, options for a neutral site were reportedly being considered, especially since rescheduling the game for week 11 would force both teams to play 16 straight games during their seasons. However, with Hurricane Irma expected to hit Florida, the decision to postpone the game has now been made official. More from ESPN:
The Dolphins and Buccaneers will be required to play 16 straight games this season, which is not ideal for either club. Miami players made it clear this week they preferred to play the game and keep the bye, despite the circumstances.
“The NFL announced yesterday that in the interest of public safety, in light of the continuing state of emergency, the league, in consultation with state and local officials as well as both clubs, would not play an NFL game in South Florida this week,” a league statement stated. “Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone in the impacted area.”
The Buccaneers are slated to play their home opener on September 17 against the Chicago Bears. The Dolphins, meanwhile, will play weeks two, three, and four away from Hard Rock Stadium. That stretch will start with a matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers on September 17, followed by a contest against the New York Jets on September 24, and then a game versus the New Orleans Saints at Wembley Stadium on October 1.