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Frame The Importance of

Commercial Truck Insurance in Tampa, FL

  • Let's face it - truckers in America have always been the backbone of our great country. They still are in modern times. On any given day, thousands of trucks traverse our highways and local roads, delivering goods and products on time so that businesses and consumers have what they need to live life. And while commercial trucking can be an incredibly lucrative way to make a living and put food on the table, it can also be risky and expensive.
  • Whether you're the owner of a fleet, an independent trucker, or have a business that uses big rigs to transport goods, you need commercial trucking insurance to protect you and your client's investments, shield you from liability, and more.
  • That's where working with a reliable truck insurance agency comes into play. Unfortunately, for many commercial truck insurance providers, serving the needs of truckers is low on the proverbial totem pole. At Independence Insurance Agency, nothing could be further from the truth.

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Insurance Agency in Tampa, FL You Can Trust

Much like you pride yourself on running a successful trucking business, Independence Insurance Agency prides itself on its years of experience providing truck insurance for hardworking men and women across the country. And in our experience, insurance rates for truckers are just too high - so high, in fact, that they eat away at their bottom line, making it more difficult to run a business and make a profit. Fortunately, at Independence Insurance Agency, we provide truckers the freedom they need from astronomically high insurance rates so they can stay on the road and keep driving America forward.

As one of the most trusted commercial trucking insurance agencies in the U.S., we understand the challenges that you face daily as a trucker. We also know how important it is to protect your business. That's why we go above and beyond to find you the best-priced coverage available, whether you're an operator, own a small fleet, a large fleet, or something in between.

Commercial Truck Insurance Tampa, FL

We Put Truckers First Because Others Don't

 Truck Insurance Tampa, FL

Truckers across the country choose to work with Independence Insurance Agency because we put their needs first before anything else. As experts in transportation insurance, we proudly offer a range of quality insurance products that are both practical and affordable for them. Our industry-leading carriers provide coverage that caters to the unique challenges faced by the trucking industry, ensuring that your business is protected at all times.

At our core, we are committed to finding the best possible price for your coverage without compromising the quality of service you deserve. The truth is, we understand how essential truckers are to the United States and take pride in making their insurance experience more streamlined and affordable.

One way we do so is by simplifying the insurance process. Our transportation specialists take the time to understand your specific needs and budget to tailor a comprehensive plan that works for you. You won't ever have to worry about cookie-cutter plans or uninterested agents when you work with our commercial trucking insurance agency. We take an educational approach to ensure that the entire big rig insurance process is quick, painless, and easy to understand. If there's something you don't understand, we're happy to take the time to explain. After all, the success and safety of your business are on the line.

Looking to the future, we are committed to providing innovative new products that cater to the ever-changing needs of truck drivers. As your one-stop shop for commercial trucking insurance, we are dedicated to your success, one policy at a time.

If you're a commercial trucker looking to ensure your rig, you can rest easy knowing that Independence Insurance Agency provides:

  • Affordable Trucking Insurance Plans for Any Budget
  • Exemplary Customer Service
  • Seasoned Transportation Specialists Who Customize Plans to Your Needs
  • A+ Carriers Across the Country
  • Simple, Easy Quote and Bind Process
  • Multiple Insurance Carriers Quoted to Find You the Best Rates
  • Truck Insurance for New Ventures

Call us or send us a message today to learn more about the best 18-wheeler insurance options for your trucking business.

chart The Commercial Truck

Common Types of Big Rig Truck Insurance in Tampa, FL

At Independence Insurance Agency, we offer several types of insurance coverage for local, intermediate, and long-haul trucking needs. Here are just a few categories of trucking insurance coverage that our agency offers.

As the foundation of your insurance policy, liability coverage is required by law in most states in the U.S. It provides coverage for damage or injuries caused to properties or other people if your 18-wheeler is responsible for the crash. Without liability coverage, it's almost impossible to drive a truck or run a trucking business without major legal consequences.

Having physical damage coverage is an essential component that shouldn't be overlooked. This insurance is responsible for covering the expenses related to repairing or replacing your truck in situations such as accidents, theft, vandalism, and other damaging events. By having this coverage, you can rest assured that your business won't be affected significantly by unexpected incidents, and you can continue running your operations smoothly even in challenging times.

For trucking companies, the goods they transport are crucial to their operations. To protect these goods from damage, loss, or theft while in transit, cargo insurance is essential. This coverage provides much-needed peace of mind for both you and your clients, allowing you to reimburse clients for any losses sustained while protecting your reputation and brand identity.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is designed to cover property damage or bodily injury that may occur during personal time when the driver/truck is not under dispatch. This coverage can be applied with or without a trailer and is added to a commercial policy as an endorsement.

While Independence Insurance Agency has built a reputation of excellence in serving the needs of truckers, we also offer general liability. Also known as Truckers General Liability, this coverage insures for bodily injuries or property damage that happen due to business activities that are NOT the cause of operating a truck. It covers accidents that occur in parking lots, rest stops, also while loading or unloading. General liability can also cover losses related to theft and vandalism. Most brokers and shippers will require this coverage to work with you.

Bobtail insurance is a type of coverage that is comparable to non-trucking liability, which is designed to offer protection when driving a truck without a trailer attached. This is commonly referred to as "bobtailing." With bobtail insurance, the tractor is covered at all times, even when it is not attached to a trailer, regardless of whether or not the truck is under dispatch.

Trailer interchange insurance is a must-have if you're involved in a trailer interchange agreement. This essential coverage offers protection for trailers owned by other parties that you're using under a contractual agreement. It covers damages caused by collisions, fire, theft, and vandalism, providing assurance to all parties involved.

Curious whether our commercial truck insurance agency in cityname, state offers additional coverage? The following options can be bound in your insurance policy:

  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Reefer Breakdown Insurance
  • Occupational Accident with Contract Liability Insurance
  • Rental Reimbursement Insurance
  • Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Insurance
  • Towing Insurance
  • Electronics Insurance
  • Much More

Three plus 3 Safe Driving Tips to

Lower the Cost of Truck Insurance in Tampa, FL

Keeping your drivers safe on the road is crucial not only for their own well-being but also for the safety of other motorists and the financial stability of your business. The Department of Labor has identified the trucking industry as one of the most hazardous sectors in the U.S. In fact, trucking and logistics fleets are known for their high injury and fatality rates. By improving how safely your truckers drive, you can help reduce expenses related to claim payouts, accidents, and insurance premium hikes.

Whether you own a large fleet or you're the owner and operator of a single rig, keep these safe driving tips in mind to help lower your insurance costs.

Implement Preventative Maintenance Plans

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

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 Trucking Insurance Tampa, FL

Practice Defensive Driving

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
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 Commercial Liability Insurance For Truckers Tampa, FL

Find Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

phone Call Now
 Commercial Truck Insurance Quote Tampa, FL

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

 Low Priced Commercial Truck Insurance Tampa, FL phone Call Now

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
Commercial Truck Insurance Tampa, FL phone Call Now

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

 Truck Insurance Tampa, FL phone Call Now

check light FAQs About

Independence Insurance Agency

If you're looking for a commercial trucking insurance agency for your business, chances are you have some questions - and we've got answers. Keep reading to learn more about some of the most commonly asked questions we hear from truckers like you.

Why go with a "jack of all trades" when you can work with specialists who focus exclusively on transportation insurance? We have excellent relationships with major trucking insurance carriers and, as such, can provide the best assistance and reasonable rates.

Typically, companies will look at claims that date back three years or less.

We proudly work with more than 20 carriers to provide our clients with the most advantageous options at competitive prices, catering to the needs of owner-operators and big fleets alike.

Permit filings are typically done by insurance companies on the next business day. Federal (FMCSA) filings are completed online and updated immediately, while some states may take up to three weeks to process.

Independence Insurance Agency: Committed to the Trucking Industry

There's no question about it - you've got to protect your staff, your rig, and your trucking business with insurance. But choosing the right insurance partner isn't always easy. Thankfully, with Independence Insurance Agency by your side, you can rest easy knowing you're covered no matter where the road takes you. If you're in need of a commercial truck insurance agency in Tampa, FL that caters to truckers like you, pick up the phone and contact one of our transportation specialists today. That way, you can get back on the road with confidence tomorrow.

 Trucking Insurance Tampa, FL

Latest News in Tampa, FL

Evans scores on 75-yard TD, tops 1,000 yards for 10th straight year; Bucs beat Panthers 21-18

TAMPA, Fla. -- — Mike Evans sprinted between two defenders into the open, snagged a pass approaching midfield, and took off for the end zone.Tampa Bay's career receiving leader scored on a 75-yard pass play and later joined Hall of Famer Jerry Rice as the only players in NFL history to string together 10 consecutive seasons with 1,000-plus yards receiving while helping the Buccaneers beat the struggling ...

TAMPA, Fla. -- — Mike Evans sprinted between two defenders into the open, snagged a pass approaching midfield, and took off for the end zone.

Tampa Bay's career receiving leader scored on a 75-yard pass play and later joined Hall of Famer Jerry Rice as the only players in NFL history to string together 10 consecutive seasons with 1,000-plus yards receiving while helping the Buccaneers beat the struggling Carolina Panthers 21-18 on Sunday.

“I don't know how much more you can say. He's been like this for 10 years now — 60 catches 10 years in a row, 1,000 yards 10 years in a row,” Bucs coach Todd Bowles said.

“You know he's getting the ball. Everybody's trying to stop him and he makes plays over and over,” Bowles added. “It's a credit to him, his work ethic and the way he approaches the game.”

Evans finished with seven receptions for 162 yards, increasing his season totals to 61 catches for 1,012 yards and 10 touchdowns. Rice set the league record of 11 straight seasons with more than 1,000 yards receiving from 1986 through 1996.

“Happy we got the win most importantly,” the 10th-year pro said. “I've had a lot of great quarterbacks and offensive coordinators that believed in me, so I really appreciate them. Hopefully I can keep that streak going for however long my career goes.”

The Bucs (5-7) won for only the second time in the past eight games, climbing into a tie for second place in the weak NFC South. Carolina (1-11) scored late to pull within a field goal, but No. 1 overall draft pick Bryce Young threw an interception with just over two minutes remaining, ending any chance of coming from behind to win the Panthers' debut under interim coach Chris Tabor.

“I love those guys. ... I feel for them," Tabor said. “Losing stinks and it's hard and it's frustrating. But at the same time, you can handle things two ways, and that's what we talked about. You can either handle it with character or you can handle it with compromise. So which is it going to be? I like our guys. We'll just keep working.”

Rachaad White scored an early touchdown and receiver Chris Godwin scored on a 19-yard run early in the fourth quarter, expanding Tampa Bay's lead to 21-10. Chuba Hubbard rushed 104 yards and two TDs for Carolina, and Young's 2-point conversion run trimmed Tampa Bay's lead to 21-18 with 5:02 left.

Despite losing six of seven games following a 3-1 start, the Bucs began the day trailing Atlanta and New Orleans by one game in the NFC South. The Falcons (6-6) beat the New York Jets to remain on top of the division, while the Saints (5-7) lost to the Detroit Lions to fall into a tie for second place with the Bucs.

The Panthers fired Frank Reich last Monday, 11 games into the coach's first season leading the Panthers. Tabor was promoted to interim coach and said he encouraged players to “play loose, not reckless” and have fun moving forward.

It was the second time in a little more than a year that Carolina faced Tampa Bay shortly after the in-season firing of a coach. Matt Rhule was dismissed in October 2022, two weeks before the Panthers knocked off Tom Brady and the visiting Bucs 21-3.

Evans had 10 catches for 207 yards that previous time the division rivals met in Tampa. He had a 40-yard reception to set up White's 1-yard TD run in the first quarter, then turned Baker Mayfield's throw into the long TD that put the Bucs ahead for good — one play after the first of Hubbard's two TD runs put the Panthers ahead 10-7 late in the third quarter.

“We needed that,” said Mayfield, who completed 14 of 29 passes for 202 yards, one touchdown and an interception. “We needed a little spark, and he was the guy to bring it to us. Nobody is better than him.”

Young completed 15 of 31 passes for 178 yards and an interception, Antoine Winfield Jr.'s pick that ended the comeback bid. The rookie was sacked four times.

“Of course, no one's happy with how things have gone. We're all competitors, but ultimately we play for each other,” Young said.

“Each game is huge for us. We are of that mindset,” Young added. “So, I can't lie and say it's not frustrating. But ultimately what permeates the locker room is the desire to want to be better, desire to want to grow and play for each other.”

EJECTION

Panthers LB Brian Burns was ejected in the third quarter when he appeared to throw a punch in a scrum that ensued after Evans' touchdown.

“Emotions got the best of me. One of their offensive linemen said something he shouldn't say," Burns said. "Initially it wasn't even my fight. I got pushed, turned around and reacted. I take full accountability for my actions.”

INJURIES

Panthers: Played without S Vonn Bell (shoulder) and TE Hayden Hurst (concussion), who were inactive.

Buccaneers: Three defensive starters — LBs Lavonte David (groin) and Devin White (foot) and CB Jamel Dean (ankle/foot) were inactive. LB SirVocea Dennis, who started in David's absence the previous week, also sat after being listed on the injury report as doubtful because of an illness. ... LB K.J. Britt (back) left in the first quarter and did not return.

UP NEXT

Panthers: Travel to New Orleans to face the Saints.

Buccaneers: Continue a stretch in which they're playing four of five on the road, visiting Atlanta with first place in the division on the line.

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AP NFL: https://apnews.com/hub/nfl

Bucs' Mike Evans posts 10th straight 1,000-yard season

ReactionsLike39Fire1TAMPA, Fla. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans knew heading into Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers that he needed 150 receiving yards to reach 1,000 yards...

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TAMPA, Fla. -- Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans knew heading into Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers that he needed 150 receiving yards to reach 1,000 yards for the 10th consecutive season. He figured he'd get a lot of free access and one-on-one matchups. But he hadn't envisioned that moving into second all time in the history books behind Jerry Rice for most consecutive 1,000-yard seasons would happen so dramatically.

There was a heavy downpour -- a December rarity even for Florida -- that halted the Bucs' downfield passing attack for two quarters and put them in a 10-7 hole with 5:10 to go in the third quarter. That's when quarterback Baker Mayfield hit Evans on a 75-yard catch and run in which Evans reached 20.6 mph, according to NFL Next Gen Stats.

Evans then told the official, "That's a touchdown, baby," before retreating to the sideline and vomiting.

"I was tired, I went to the sideline, I had to throw up a bit, so I'm happy I earned that one," said Evans, who also hit a career high for a different kind of "YAC" (yards after the catch) on both the play (56 yards) and for the game (80 yards).

"That's Mike's deal. ... I've seen Mike puke a bunch of times," wide receiver Chris Godwin said with a laugh. "We were like sledging through there, couldn't get anything going, and that play sparked us -- it was huge."

Evans still needed 6 yards after that, which he got on an 11-yard out route with 5:02 to go in the fourth quarter, after both teams traded touchdowns and the Panthers succeeded on a two-point conversion attempt to make it 21-18, a score that would stand.

"We knew before that last drive when he was about 4 or 6 yards away," Mayfield said. "Everybody kept saying different numbers. So the first pass play, they probably would have had to double cover him for me to not throw to him."

Teammates congratulated Evans by tapping him on the helmet when Carolina called a timeout two plays later. The video boards in both end zones flashed "M1KE" in big bold letters next to an image of Evans' face. He was greeted with a standing ovation from fans chanting, "Mike!"

"It's what you want as a kid," Evans said. "That's what we dream about. I've always dreamed about this, I've always been a huge fan of sports. I always said, 'One day, I want to be one of those guys. There's plenty of them. But I'm happy that I'm one of them. ... It seems surreal at times, but I'm in the moment. So maybe when I'm long gone from the game, I'll look back and really think about what I've done."

Mayfield, who shared a hug in the tunnel with Evans after the game said, "I really don't have words to describe what he just did in his career to accomplish that for [10] seasons in a row. And I'm pretty damn happy that I wasn't the guy to break that streak to be honest with you. But more happy for Mike. That's amazing. He's a first ballot Hall of Famer, and nobody can take that away from him. ... It's truly special. It's one of those things you'll look back on and be able to cherish that moment, that you were a part of it."

Evans said he does think about Rice's record of 11 consecutive 1,000-yard seasons and hopes to match it next year. He's already the NFL's all-time leader in most consecutive 1,000-yard seasons to start a career. And in addition to the consecutive 1,000-yard seasons, he is now tied for second all time with his idol, Randy Moss, for most 1,000-yard seasons with 10. Rice had 14.

"I don't know how much more you can say," Bowles said. "He's been like this for 10 years now. Over 60 catches 10 years in a row. Over 1,000 yards 10 years in a row. You know he's getting the ball and everybody's trying to stop him, and he makes plays over and over. It's a credit to him, his work ethic, the way he approaches the game. Unbelievable."

Evans, who turned 30 in August and has missed just nine regular-season games in 10 seasons, said he's unsure exactly how long he'll continue playing, although a source close to him said they believe he wants to continue playing for at least three more seasons.

Whether that comes in a Buccaneers uniform is up in the air. Evans owns virtually every franchise record for receiving yards and touchdowns, having played with six different starting quarterbacks, four different head coaches and five offensive coordinators. He has evolved from being a deep-ball threat who didn't run a full route tree at Texas A&M and largely functioned off the improvisation of then-quarterback Johnny Manziel to showing stop-and-go suddenness on short and intermediate routes and getting yards after the catch, something that eluded him for several years until recently.

"Now he's opening up a whole new part of his game," Bowles said. "I think that's what he loves about playing right now in this stage of his career. He's running routes he hadn't run earlier in his career and he's making the best of them, he's getting YAC yards and he's a complete receiver."

Evans and agent Deryk Gilmore gave the Bucs a Week 1 deadline for a new contract, and that was not met, with Evans saying he would not discuss a new deal until after the season and that he would be exploring his options. A source close to the situation said that there have been no contract talks with the Buccaneers since that Week 1 deadline, keeping good on that promise.

When asked Sunday if he has thought about what his performance this season might mean in the months ahead, he said, "I don't know. When that moment comes, it'll come. But right now, I'm focused on getting this team to the playoffs."

Hedman got to 1,000 games for Lightning doing things ‘the right way’

Will become 1st defenseman in team history to hit milestoneTAMPA -- Victor Hedman chuckles when he thinks about the days leading up to the 2009 NHL Draft.“I remember I had a breakfast with the Islanders,” Hedman said. “And they said, ‘If we pick you, how would I feel if the fan base back home booed me?’ That’s when I had a feeling they weren’t going to pick me.”Th...

Will become 1st defenseman in team history to hit milestone

TAMPA -- Victor Hedman chuckles when he thinks about the days leading up to the 2009 NHL Draft.

“I remember I had a breakfast with the Islanders,” Hedman said. “And they said, ‘If we pick you, how would I feel if the fan base back home booed me?’ That’s when I had a feeling they weren’t going to pick me.”

The Islanders instead took John Tavares, and Hedman went No. 2 to the Tampa Bay Lightning, setting the stage for a career that he seen Hedman win the Norris Trophy in 2018 voted as the top defenseman in the NHL, the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2020 as the most valuable player in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and the Stanley Cup in 2020 and 2021.

He’ll hit a major milestone Monday, playing his 1,000th NHL game when the Lightning host the Dallas Stars at Amalie Arena (7 p.m. ET; BSSUN, BSSW).

“Just doing it for the same team means the world to me,” Hedman said Monday morning. “You don’t take anything for granted in this league. It was kind of a rough start to my career. A lot of ups and downs, but I found my way and here we are. I’m going to embrace this whole day. I’m going to treat it like a normal gameday during the day, but tonight is going to be very special with all of my family and friends here.”

Much of the same group that will be in Tampa on Monday were there at the Bell Centre in Montreal at the 2009 Draft. That includes his wife, Sanna, his parents, Olle and Elizabeth, and his brothers, Oscar and Johan. The new additions to the group are his two young sons, Rio and Viggo.

Olle Hedman, in a letter to his son that was posted on the Lightning’s website Monday, said Victor got to 1,000 games “the right way.”

“You will never think you’re any better than the person next to you. You treat everyone with respect. Son, you’ve done it all the right way,” Olle Hedman wrote. “You came to this town at 18 years old with the weight of the world on your shoulders. They labeled you the ‘best Swedish defenseman since Nicklas Lidstrom.’

“You took that pressure as a privilege. You embraced it and took it in stride.”

Hedman is the first Lightning defenseman to reach 1,000 games and third Tampa Bay player, joining Vincent Lecavalier (1,037) and Steven Stamkos (1,026 entering Monday). He is first among Lightning defensemen in points (677), goals (148) and assists (529). The next closest one in points is teammate Mikhail Sergachev with 254.

Hedman will become the seventh Sweden-born player at his position to reach 1,000 games and 18th overall from the country.

A familiar face on Hedman’s journey to 1,000 games is Stamkos, who was selected No. 1 by the Lightning in the 2008 NHL Draft.

“We’ve gone through so many ups and downs together and have come out on the right side of it,” Stamkos said. “I didn’t know what to expect when we first met, but we were pretty much thrown in this league together around the same time. We became close, our girlfriends, who are now our wives, became close. We will always be there for each other.”

Hedman admits to getting emotional when thinking about Stamkos’ 1,000th game last April, and their accomplishments together, which include winning the Stanley Cup twice.

“For us to do this together, him last year and me this year, it’s special,” Hedman said. “We’ve grown from boys to men together, came in as 18-year-olds and now we’re parents with kids back home. We’re early to bed now, but we appreciate each other and what we’ve done for this team and what the team has done for us. We’re super fortunate it worked out the way it did.”

The appreciation for Hedman goes through the Lightning organization, where his professionalism and work ethic are lauded by teammates and around the League.

“He’s just great at everything,” Sergachev said. “He works so hard, and he sets a great example for me from the time I got here to now. On the ice there are very few like him. His skill, his skating and he’s so tall with his length (6-foot-7, 246 pounds). It’s almost not fair.”

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Erik Karlsson and Hedman have been friends since their days in Sweden. Karlsson said that Hedman has managed to exceed the expectations placed on him when he was young.

“He was someone that kind of came into this league ready to play right away, very hyped up, a lot of expectations on him,” Karlsson said. “I think he's done more than live up to them, which tells a lot about the character that he has. We've seen many guys try and fail, so good for him to be able to be at this level this early in his career and play his 1,000 games. He still has a lot more left in him. I'm excited for his milestone and excited to see what he can do in the next upcoming years as well.”

Hedman has a list of people he wants to thank for helping him find his way in the NHL. Lidstrom, a Hockey Hall of Famer, remains his idol, and he credits Mattias Ohlund for taking him under his wing and showing him how to carry himself as an NHL player.

“It’s very special. It doesn’t seem real that we’ve come this far,” Hedman said. “Time has flown by. It’s been 14-15 years and for me to be standing him in the same rink and in front of so many people that have been here the whole time, it’s very special.”

NHL.com independent correspondent Wes Crosby contributed to this report

Bucs impressed by Bryce Young's poise, potential

TAMPA, Fla. — By the numbers, Bryce Young didn't light up the scoreboard at Raymond James on Sunday.But if you asked the players and coaches who tried to defend Carolina's rookie quarterback through 69 snaps, they came away thoroughly impressed. Although the Panthers fell to 1-11 with a 21-18 setback against the Buccaneers, Young made some big-time throws and never lost his composure."I think he's going to be a sta...

TAMPA, Fla. — By the numbers, Bryce Young didn't light up the scoreboard at Raymond James on Sunday.

But if you asked the players and coaches who tried to defend Carolina's rookie quarterback through 69 snaps, they came away thoroughly impressed. Although the Panthers fell to 1-11 with a 21-18 setback against the Buccaneers, Young made some big-time throws and never lost his composure.

"I think he's going to be a star," said Tampa Bay coach Todd Bowles, who will face Carolina again in the Jan. 7 season finale at Bank of America Stadium. "He's very elusive in the pocket and very accurate if you give him time.''

The Panthers tried to confuse the Bucs by varying Young's launch points. Young operated both under center and out of the shotgun, rolling out on occasion to buy himself more time.

Jonathan Mingo was Young's primary target, catching six of the 10 passes sent his way, including a 31-yard grab that set up a late third-quarter touchdown plunge by Chuba Hubbard that gave Carolina a brief 10-7 advantage.

"I like that Bryce Young kid a lot,'' said veteran Bucs safety Ryan Neal, who was forced to play some inside linebacker Sunday due to a rash of injuries. "A lot of people put him under a lot of fire, but you've got to remember he's a rookie. I know people like to compare him to C.J. Stroud, but that's not fair. It's a different team, different scheme, different system.''

Bowles said he was worried during the week about Young's mobility. He had 25 carries in 10 games entering Sunday, but he never scrambled past the line of scrimmage except for a successful 2-point conversion. Hubbard did the heavy lifting on the ground, rushing for 104 yards on his 25 attempts.

Until Hubbard's first 1-yard scoring run capped a 65-yard drive, the Panthers had done little offensively against a Bucs defense that had struggled in recent weeks. Carolina's second drive of the game stalled at the Tampa Bay 5-yard line when Young threw incomplete on second down and Hubbard was dropped by Neal for a 3-yard loss.

The Panthers settled for Eddy Piñeiro's 23-yard field goal, and Carolina converted only 1-of-7 on third down in the opening half. The Panthers dominated the time of possession in the third quarter (10:25) and made the Bucs sweat with 5:02 remaining when Hubbard finished off a 75-yard drive with another 1-yard run.

Young kept the 11-play drive alive with a 30-yard strike to DJ Chark Jr. on fourth-and-6. Trailing 21-16, the Panthers went for the 2-point conversion. Young was sacked, but a facemask penalty gave Carolina another chance, and Young ran around the right end and reached the end zone.

"He has a bright future,'' said Bucs safety Antoine Winfield Jr., who had a late interception on a fourth-down pass intended for Adam Thielen. "He's still young, still a rookie, but I think he's going to be good. He kept his poise and kept playing. They were in it the whole time.''

Young was sacked four times while throwing for 178 yards. Despite seven penalties and a 3-for-15 showing on third down, the Panthers topped the 15-point plateau for the first time in six games.

"I love Bryce; he's a hell of a competitor,'' said Panthers right tackle Taylor Moton. "I think the sky's the limit for him. I'm very excited to see what the future holds for him. He has great poise and makes sure we have the right energy in the huddle. He makes sure we're all on the same page.''

Bowles, whose defense was shredded by Stroud four weeks ago in Houston, came out victorious against the No. 1 pick in the 2023 draft. That doesn't mean Young failed to make Bowles uncomfortable.

"I saw him as a star when I was looking at film all week,'' Bowles said. "He had 40-something sacks, but he escaped 60-something, and he's very accurate given time. It's just first-year quarterbacks; some do well with the people around them, some you have to get some help, and some just have to have growing pains.

"I'm glad I got him early. I don't want to see him too many times.''

In Their Own Words: Olle Hedman

Victor Hedman's father pens a letter to his son on the day of his 1,000th NHL gameVictor,Where did the time go?It feels like just yesterday you were three years old, and I was lacing up your skates for the very first time. Now, you’re lacing them up on your own for the 1,000th time in the NHL.One thousand games. Your name will forever be on a list with some of the legends of our country – Nicklas, Markus, Borje, Mats, Daniel and Henrik.As I try to think of the right words to describe ...

Victor Hedman's father pens a letter to his son on the day of his 1,000th NHL game

Victor,

Where did the time go?

It feels like just yesterday you were three years old, and I was lacing up your skates for the very first time. Now, you’re lacing them up on your own for the 1,000th time in the NHL.

One thousand games. Your name will forever be on a list with some of the legends of our country – Nicklas, Markus, Borje, Mats, Daniel and Henrik.

As I try to think of the right words to describe this journey, I find it nearly impossible to convey just how proud of you I truly am.

I’m proud of everything you’ve accomplished on the ice.

I’m proud of how you’ve treated everyone along the way.

I’m proud of the son you’ve always been.

I’m proud of the husband and father you’ve become.

I’m proud of the man you are today.

Do you remember all the days at Kempevallen, when you and your teammates would huddle around the door to watch the senior team walk out to the ice? They were superheroes. They were your idols.

Now, that’s you. You’re the one the kids are watching walk onto the ice. You’re the one they’re idolizing. You’re the one they look up to.

All the recognition you’re going to receive tonight, you deserve all of it. Enjoy every single second.

You’ve made your friends, family and country prouder than you ever could have imagined. And you did it all through your dedication. Your work ethic never faltered. You put the team before yourself. Everything you have today, you earned.

Almost 15 years later, I can still hear your name being called from the Bell Centre stage in Montreal.

“The Tampa Bay Lightning are proud to select from MODO and the Swedish Elite League, Victor Hedman.”

I had goosebumps then. I get goosebumps now just thinking about it.

You wanted Tampa. We wanted Tampa. Now, you’ve played more games in Tampa than any defenseman ever. Just think about that.

Only two players have put that jersey on more times than you have. Soon it will only be one.

Do you remember how different things were when you started here? From the day you arrived to today, you and Steven are the only players left. And look at the impact the two of you have had.

For over 300 straight games, every seat in the arena has been accounted for. Tampa has become a hockey town.

Two more Stanley Cup banners are hanging from the rafters. You can’t go anywhere in town without seeing that Lightning bolt. The team has captivated an entire city.

You are a pillar in all of that. But you’d never say that yourself. And that’s just another reason why I’m so proud to be your father.

You have no ego. You think of yourself last. You’re kind. Nobody has a bad word to say about you. You’re a good man. And you’ve made everyone around you so proud.

On the ice, you’re a champion. Your growth as a player has been remarkable to watch. Your explosiveness, the way you see the ice, the way you impact the game – all of it makes me incredibly proud. You’ve done it all.

And with everything you’ve accomplished on the ice, it’s tough to imagine being prouder of you for anything else.

But as I sit here today and write this letter, nothing is more gratifying than seeing the man you’ve become off the ice.

You will never think you’re any better than the person next to you. You treat everyone with respect. Son, you’ve done it all the right way.

You came to this town at 18 years old with the weight of the world on your shoulders. They labeled you “the best Swedish defenseman since Nicklas Lidstrom.”

You took that pressure as a privilege. You embraced it and took it in stride.

Looking back at your career to this point, could this journey have gone any better? Victor, you haven’t just met the expectations. You’ve exceeded them. You became everything your fans could have wanted and more.

You’ve been consistently active in helping your community become a better place. You’ve used your platform to bring joy to those less fortunate than you.

You’ve proven all there is to prove on the ice. You’re an incredible hockey player – a world-class hockey player.

But beyond that, as a human being, you are as good as they come.

As a boy, you were always kind to everyone. As a man, through all the stardom and recognition, nothing has changed.

You’re a loving husband and father. You’d do anything for the people you care about. As lucky as you are to have Sanna, Rio and Viggo in your life, they are just as fortunate to have you in theirs.

Tonight, I hope you feel the love and appreciation your teammates, the organization and the city have for you.

Victor, I couldn’t be more proud of you. There’s nothing that brings me more joy than being your father.

From floorball in our basement to 1,000 games in the NHL. What a ride it’s been. And you’re not done yet. Keep making us proud like I know you will. Congratulations, son.

Jag älskar dig,

Dad

The Rays belong to Tampa Bay | Column

Three weeks ago, on these pages, the Tampa Bay Times’ Editorial Board echoed former St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker’s opinion that the Rays should be named after the city that pays for the stadium.I disagree.Related: ...

Three weeks ago, on these pages, the Tampa Bay Times’ Editorial Board echoed former St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker’s opinion that the Rays should be named after the city that pays for the stadium.

I disagree.

Related: Here's why a 'St. Petersburg Rays' would be better for the Tampa Bay area.

Our board is a collection of people of which I am one. My viewpoint does not always carry the day. As the chairperson and CEO of the Tampa Bay Times, formerly the St. Petersburg Times, I believe the Rays belong to our region, not any one city. The Times’ own history, and our decades of advocacy for regional identity and growth, made the board’s call for a new, less-inclusive name rich irony, if not hypocrisy.

The argument is that St. Petersburg will pay for the new stadium. Actually, all of Pinellas County will pick up the tab. The Pinellas Rays?

Professional sports teams are funded by more than just stadium attendance. The Rays enjoy one of the most loyal TV audiences, a fact that has challenged filling seats. The Bally Rays?

Related: St. Petersburg Rays? Rick Baker pitching City Council on name change.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tampa Bay Lightning don’t belong to just Tampa. Feeding Tampa Bay doesn’t just fight hunger in Hillsborough County, where it is headquartered. Organizations mean more than where they have a building. We should know.

Bemetra Simmons, CEO of the Tampa Bay Partnership, which created the highly successful Tampa Bay Water, shared that 20% of all residents in our area cross county lines daily. Our beaches, our downtowns, our airports, our natural springs and so much more are treasures of regional pride.

We are fortunate. Tampa Bay is a body of water. Nobody lives in the bay, but we all live around it. It is what unifies us.

There is no shortage of parochial fights in metropolitan areas across the country. Some are clumsily resolved with complex hyphenations like the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, metro or the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, North Carolina, research triangle. The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, are anything but twins. Then there are awkward directional state labels like Northwest Arkansas, a collection of four cities, or South Florida, which somehow leaves out the entire southwest coast of our state. These identity tussles are not new, and they are not helpful for what really matters.

St. Petersburg does not live in Tampa’s shadow. They both have thrived adjacent to the same bay. Tampa Bay.

Labeling for broad economic development and quality of life is wise. Labeling for ego and name recognition is just inside baseball.

Conan Gallaty is Chairperson and CEO of the Times Publishing Company.

USF Football to Make 11th Bowl Appearance in Boca Raton Bowl vs. Syracuse

Tickets are now available to be requested for the Boca Raton Bowl. Ticket prices are $32 or $57 per ticket and will be in USF-designated sections. Additionally, USF students can claim specially discounted tickets in honor of South Florida Football's 11th Bowl Game! Please note all patrons, regardless of age, require a paid ticket for admittance. Student discounts are available after logging in to the USF Account Manager page using a USF email address. The priority request deadline is Friday, December 8th a...

Tickets are now available to be requested for the Boca Raton Bowl. Ticket prices are $32 or $57 per ticket and will be in USF-designated sections. Additionally, USF students can claim specially discounted tickets in honor of South Florida Football's 11th Bowl Game! Please note all patrons, regardless of age, require a paid ticket for admittance. Student discounts are available after logging in to the USF Account Manager page using a USF email address. The priority request deadline is Friday, December 8th at 11:59 pm. You may still request tickets after this date based on availability.
Secure My Bowl Tickets!

Bulls to face Orange in FAU Stadium on Dec. 21 in first bowl since 2018

TAMPA, DEC. 3, 2023 – First-year head coach Alex Golesh and the Bulls will continue one of the top turnarounds in college football when South Florida (6-6; 4-4 American) makes the program's 11th bowl appearance, and first since 2018, when USF takes on Syracuse (6-6; 2-6 ACC) in the Roofclaim.com Boca Raton Bowl on Thur., Dec. 21 at FAU Stadium (30,000) in Boca Raton, Fla.

The game kicks off at 8 p.m. and will be televised by ESPN.

Fans can reserve tickets for the Bulls 11th bowl game HERE. The USF Women's basketball team will be playing in the West Palm Classic – approximately 30 minutes from the bowl site – on Dec. 20-21, with the Bulls taking on national power Baylor at 3:30 p.m. on Dec. 21 prior to the bowl game.

USF football's five-win improvement over 2022 ranks as the greatest turnaround in program history and is tied with Liberty (13-0) for the second-best in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) in 2023 behind only Northwestern's six-win improvement.

USF is 6-4 all-time in bowl games, with notable victories over Clemson, South Carolina and Texas Tech. This will mark the Bulls' fourth bowl game appearance in the state of Florida, having previously played in the St. Petersburg Bowl (2008), Miami Beach Bowl (2015) and Gasparilla Bowl (2018).

USF will be making the program's first-ever appearance in the Boca Raton Bowl, which will be played for the 10th time in 2023. Toledo defeated Liberty, 21-19, in the 2022 game. Fans can take part in the Dual Team Pep Rally on Dec. 20 (6 p.m.) at the Mizner Park Amphitheater and the Fan Fest (4-7 p.m.) on Dec. 21.

USF and Syracuse, former BIG EAST Conference members, have met 10 times with the Bulls holding an 8-2 series lead, including most recent victories in Tampa in 2015 (45-24) and at Syracuse in 2016 (45-20). This will be the first meeting in a bowl game and marks the Bulls' 11th different bowl opponent.

For further Boca Raton Bowl information and schedules click HERE.

NOTING USF: South Florida (6-6; 4-4 American) • USF is making its 11th bowl appearance and made six straight bowl appearances from 2005-10 and four straight from 2015-18. The Bulls are 6-4 in bowl games. • USF's last bowl win came with a 38-34 victory over Texas Tech in the 2017 Birmingham Bowl to complete a 10-2 season and finish ranked No. 21 in the Associated Press Poll. The Bulls have bowl games wins over Tech, South Carolina (2016 Birmingham Bowl), Clemson (2010 Meineke Car Care Bowl), Northern Illinois (2009 International Bowl), Memphis (2008 St. Petersburg Bowl) and East Carolina (2006 Papajohns.com Bowl). • The Bulls' five-win improvement over 2022 ranks as the greatest turnaround in program history and tied with Liberty for the second-best in FBS football in 2023 behind only Northwestern's six-win improvement. • Five Bulls were named to AAC All-Conference teams: wide receiver Sean Atkins' (Viera) was a Second Team selection, while offensive guard Zane Herring (Madison), cornerback Aamaris Brown-Bunkley (Tampa), defensive tackle Rashad Cheney (Atlanta) and linebacker Jhalyn Shuler (Abbeville, S.C.) earned honorable-mention. • Head coach Alex Golesh was named one of 15 finalists for College Football News' Coach of the Year. The former Tennessee offensive coordinator has installed an explosive offense that has registered just the sixth 5,000-yard season in program history and is on pace for a top-three program mark while producing the program's first 3,000-yard passer and potentially first 1,000-yard receiver. • QB Byrum Brown (Raleigh, N.C.) leads the AAC and ranks No. 7 nationally in total offense (318.6 ypg) and set the USF season passing record with 3,078 yards. He is one of two players nationally with 3,000+ yards passing and 700+ rushing, joining Heisman favorite Jayden Daniels of LSU. His 34 touchdowns accounted for are tied for the third-best mark in program history and he ranks No. 12 nationally in points responsible for per game (17.3 ppg). His 23 passing touchdowns on the year are just two short of the USF season record. • WR Sean Atkins has set program season records for receptions (86) and receiving yards (961), as the former walk-on is on track to become the first 1,000-yard receiver in a season in program history. • The USF offense ranks No. 17 nationally producing 455 yards per game and is the fastest offense in the nation averaging 82 plays a game, the only team to post over 80 in the nation. The Bulls have produced 114 explosive plays on the season.

NOTING THE OPPONENT: Syracuse (6-6; 2-6 ACC) • Syracuse is coming off a 35-31 victory over Wake Forest in their final regular season game. The Orange posted 468 yards of offense – 224 passing and 244 rushing – as LeQuint Allen Jr. ran for a career-best 145 yards. Garrett Shrader threw for 173 yards and three touchdowns, alongside one rushing touchdown and Damien Alford had four catches for 126 yards and a career-best two touchdowns. • The Orange won two of their last three games, also beating Pittsburgh (28-13), to earn bowl eligibility. • Syracuse fired head coach Dino Babers with one regular season game remaining and recently hired Georgia defensive backs coach Fran Brown to lead the program. • Syracuse will be making its 28th bowl appearance (16-10-1). The Orange began playing football in 1889 and have a 743-575-449 record in 135 seasons. Running back Ernie Davis won the 1961 Heisman Trophy for Syracuse. • Syracuse will be making its second-straight bowl appearance – falling to Minnesota (28-20) in the 2022 Pinstripe Bowl – and third in the last 10 years. • Syracuse also has victories over Colgate (65-0), Western Michigan (48-7), Purdue (35-20) and Army (29-16) on the year and started 4-0 on the season. • Syracuse ranks 85th nationally posting 358.7 yards per game and 79th averaging 25.5 points per game. The Orange defense stands 65th giving up 378.3 yards per game and 49th giving up 23.8 points. • Veteran quarterback Garrett Shrader passed for 1,686 yards and 13 touchdowns while completing 63 percent of his passes and running for 469 yards and eight touchdowns. • Second Team All-ACC running back LeQuint Allen Jr. has run for 1,062 yards and nine touchdowns and ranks third in the ACC in rushing. He has a team-best 36 receptions and a team-best 10 total touchdowns. • Wide receiver Damien Alford has 29 catches for 527 yards and three touchdowns. • Linebacker Marlowe Wax earned Second Team All-ACC and leads the team with 101 tackles and has forced four fumbles. His 35.5 career tackles for loss are seventh all-time at Syracuse.

ABOUT USF FOOTBALL The USF football program first took the field in 1997 and completed its 27th regular season in 2023 by earning the program's 11th bowl bid, entering a new $22 million Indoor Performance Facility and receiving Board of Trustees approval for construction of a $340-million on-campus stadium. The Bulls have posted 15 winning seasons, earned 16 All-America selections, including a 2021 consensus All-American kick returner, and had 32 first-team all-conference selections. USF has had 30 players selected in the NFL Draft and has made 10 bowl game appearances (going 6-4 in those games), posting a program-record six straight appearances from 2005-2010 and most recently making four straight bowl appearances from 2015-18. The Bulls posted back-to-back 10-win seasons in 2016 and 2017, logging a program-record 11-2 mark in 2016 while finishing both seasons ranked in the Top 25. USF spent a program-record 20 straight weeks ranked in the Top 25 during the 2016 and 2017 seasons and reached as high as No. 2 in the national rankings during the 2007 season.

Follow @USFFootball on Twitter for all the latest information concerning the USF Football program.

– #GoBulls –

Panthers-Buccaneers Inactives | Chris Godwin Cleared to Play

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be without their two starting off-ball linebackers on Sunday against the Carolina Panthers, but they will have both starting receivers in action.Lavonte David and Devin White were named inactive for the Week 13 contest due to groin and foot injuries, respectively. David will be out for the second week in a row while White will miss a game for the first time this season. With rookie linebacker SirVocea Dennis also out due to an illness, J.J. Russell and K.J. Britt will be pressed into action with the start...

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be without their two starting off-ball linebackers on Sunday against the Carolina Panthers, but they will have both starting receivers in action.

Lavonte David and Devin White were named inactive for the Week 13 contest due to groin and foot injuries, respectively. David will be out for the second week in a row while White will miss a game for the first time this season. With rookie linebacker SirVocea Dennis also out due to an illness, J.J. Russell and K.J. Britt will be pressed into action with the starting group.

The Bucs' defense will also be without starting cornerback Jamel Dean for the second week in a row due to ankle and foot injuries. Second-year corner Zyon McCollum will once again step into the starting lineup.

Wide receiver Chris Godwin was considered questionable for the game after aggravating a neck injury in practice on Thursday and he did not practice on Friday. However, he was cleared for action before the game and should start opposite Mike Evans.

Because Godwin was a question mark and Rakim Jarrett was placed on injured reserve in Week 12, the Buccaneers elevated wide receivers Ryan Miller and David Moore from the practice squad for Sunday's game. Due to those two elevations, the Buccaneers had 55 players available on Sunday and thus had to name seven game day inactives. The Panthers elevated center Justin McCray and defensive end Chris Wormley from the practice squad and also had to name seven inactives for the game.

Tampa Bay promoted John Wolford from the practice squad in Week Nine, meaning the team is now carrying three quarterbacks on the 53-man roster. As such, the Bucs will take advantage of the NFL's new "inactive third quarterback" rule again on Sunday. Wolford is on the inactive list for the game but would be allowed to play if both Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask exited the game due to injury or ejection.

The Buccaneers and Panthers submitted their list of inactives at 2:35 p.m. ET on Sunday, 90 minutes before the scheduled kickoff of their Week 13 game at Raymond James Stadium.

Carolina's inactive information will be added shortly.

BUCCANEERS INACTIVES

David, Dean, Dennis and White are out due to injury or illness. Wolford is the inactive third quarterback and would be eligible to play in the game if both Mayfield and Trask are injured or disqualified.

PANTHERS INACTIVES

Bell, Hurst and Tremble are out due to injury.

Wimauma farm owners share cultivating practices to create a healthy community

WIMAUMA, Fla. — Millions of people in over 168 countries are working to ensure everyone has access to food by taking part in the Slow Food movement, according to Slow Food USA.What You Need To Know The Slow Food movement aims to prevent the fast food process by retaining local food cultures and traditions.Twice a day, farm manager Lizbeth Sanchez can be found feeding her chickens, which is part of her daily routine on her fam...

WIMAUMA, Fla. — Millions of people in over 168 countries are working to ensure everyone has access to food by taking part in the Slow Food movement, according to Slow Food USA.

What You Need To Know

The Slow Food movement aims to prevent the fast food process by retaining local food cultures and traditions.

Twice a day, farm manager Lizbeth Sanchez can be found feeding her chickens, which is part of her daily routine on her family farm.

“We started off with 25 chickens and right now we have around 200 chickens,” she said.

She’s in charge of raising the birds and, most importantly, making sure they’re fed.

But Sanchez doesn’t just provide them with standard chicken feed — the mixture includes fruits and vegetables, along with calcium for their bones.

“We want to minimize additives and possible hormones that can be included into other diets," she said.

Sanchez says it’s all part of their mission to provide food without preservatives, helping to ensure their community is healthy.

Farm owner Jose Sanchez is preserving practices from his native country of Mexico. He says their methods are a way of life.

“We are removing the weeds here instead of using chemicals in our plants. Instead of buying fertilizer, we make our own and we never apply chemicals to the leaves.”

He says this process takes time, which means the food he grows needs more tending to.

The Slow Food movement is an international organization focused on three defining principles:

1. Good: Quality, flavorsome and healthy food

2. Clean: Production that does not harm the environment.

3. Fair: Accessible prices for consumers and fair conditions and pay for producers.

The absence of chemicals is part of their philosophy.

“The importance of not applying anything to it is because the plant will absorb it, and if I eat this plant, I will absorb it because it’s inside of the plant and it’s causing an effect to the plant. Consequently, it will do the same to me.” said Jose Sanchez.

It’s why each plant Jose Sanchez cultivates serves a greater purpose, whether to help someone who is ill, or to make a meal using ingredients from their backyard.

Lizbeth Sanchez says it’s a cycle that many people don’t think about, and it’s a message they want others to understand when they sit down to eat their food.

“Our big focus here at the farm is for everything to be as fresh as possible.”

El Sendero Verde is hoping to make a difference in the community’s health by providing products with purpose.

The farm owners say their goal is to establish courses for those interested in learning the different practices of growing food.

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