The Central Florida corridor has been a popular location for alternative professional football since the 1960s. Two teams, in particular, had success in Tampa Bay: the Tampa Bay Storm was one of the Arena Football League’s most successful and longest-lived franchises, surviving in the city from 1991 until it suspended operations after the 2017 season. The Tampa Bay Bandits were one of the biggest successes in the United States Football League in the 1980s. In addition, the Florida Tuskers of the UFL played one of their games in nearby St. Petersburg.
The original XFL had placed one of its teams, the Orlando Rage, 80 miles up Interstate 4 in Orlando, where that city had openly embraced the league and had some of its best attendance (buoyed in part by Orlando also having the best regular-season record). The former Alliance of American Football placed a team of their own, the Orlando Apollos, in Orlando before the current XFL announced its teams.
The only other major professional sports team playing in February and March in Tampa is the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League, but the XFL team also faces indirect competition from Major League Baseball’s spring training.
The Vipers inaugural season was cut short due to the 2019 – 2020 coronavirus pandemic and the XFL officially suspended operations for the remainder of the season on March 20, 2020.
The Tampa Bay Vipers is a professional American football team based in Tampa, Florida. The team is an owned-and-operated member of the XFL (2020) begun by Vince McMahon of World Wrestling Entertainment. The team will play its home games at Raymond James Stadium, along with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the NFL and the University of South Florida Bulls. The team will be headquartered at Plant City Stadium in Plant City, Florida, where players will be housed and practices held.
2020 – Present / XFL
2020 – Present / Tampa Bay Vipers
Vipers – This venomous snake with large hinged fangs, typically having a broad head and stout body is commonly found in the Florida area.
XFL Championships 0
2020 – Present / Raymond James Stadium
2020 – Present / Alpha Entertainment, LLC
2020 – Present / Marc Trestman
*Blue is this team’s history