Raymond James Stadium ready for NFL kickoff, COVID-19 protocols for fans in place


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The National Football League is set to kickoff the 2021 season in Tampa on Thursday night with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers facing the Dallas Cowboys.

Kickoff is set for 8:20 p.m. ET. Fans are being told to find their seats by 8 p.m., in time for the “historic Championship Celebration.”

“Over 3,500 people will be working Raymond James Stadium this Thursday night and we’re all working collectively. The number one priority is everyone’s health and safety,” said Chief Operating Officer Brian Ford.

A number of safety protocols will be in place: All staff members will be masked, there will be enhanced cleaning in high traffic areas, cashless food and drink vendors and concession stands will be outfitted with plexiglass, Ford said.

Fan safety protocols:

  • Raymond James Stadium will continue to enforce a no-bag policy – you will not be able to bring a bag into the stadium that is larger than 4.5″ by 6.5″
  • You will not be temperature screened
  • You are not required to wear a mask but you are encouraged to wear a mask in any indoor space regardless of your vaccination status
  • The parking lots and the concession stands will remain cashless this season but you will be able to convert cash to card at reverse ATMs stationed throughout the concourse

“We’ve worked very closely with the Tampa Sports Authority to maintain an environment that I think people will see and respect,” Ford said, adding that Raymond James staff will review the COVID-19 safety measures after each game.

“What can we do better and what can we implement and what do we need to implement. But, as of right now, the protocol is in place for the opening game,” Ford said.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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