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NFL’s Buccaneers land in Charlotte after fleeing Irma in Tampa

Tampa Bay waters recede as region braces for Hurricane Irma

Watch as Hurricane Irma pulls away the waters surrounding Maximo Park in St. Petersburg, Florida.
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Watch as Hurricane Irma pulls away the waters surrounding Maximo Park in St. Petersburg, Florida.

They might be division rivals, but the Panthers have reached out to help the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after a large contingent from the organization fled Tampa for Charlotte on Saturday ahead of Hurricane Irma.

The Bucs chartered five planes to relocate 130 players, football and business staffers and their immediate families to Charlotte on Saturday, according to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times.

The Bucs’ opener at Miami was postponed to Week 11 earlier this week because of safety concerns surrounding Irma.

Panthers spokesman Steven Drummond said the team has been in touch with the Bucs and will monitor the situation.

Depending on the damage Irma causes in Tampa – where the Bucs are scheduled to play next week against Chicago – the Panthers’ NFC South rivals might need to find a practice site in the Carolinas.

The Panthers could offer to share their facility or help get the Bucs set up at UNC Charlotte or Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C.

“Hopefully those guys are all safe,” Panthers coach Ron Rivera said Sunday. “And whatever's happening, hopefully we can be helpful to them.”

The Miami Dolphins are scheduled to practice this week in Oxnard, Calif., site of the Cowboys’ training camp facility and in close proximity to Miami’s Week 2 game in Los Angeles against the Chargers.

Joseph Person: 704-358-5123, @josephperson

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