The Turnaround 1997 Bucs: Where Are They Now?

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The Turnaround 1997 Bucs: Where Are They Now?

1997.

The orange and white was out. Red and pewter were in.

NFL Films showed up at training camp at the University of Tampa's Pepin Rood Stadium, placing faith that the Bucs would be their annual surprise team.

So right they would be.

For some Buc fans, the 1997 season holds a special place. A 5-0 start meant no longer could a fan walk up to games and purchase tickets, or find them tucked under windshield wipers in stadium parking lots.

Ten regular season victories and a home playoff win sendoff of the Old Sombrero followed.

For the first time in more than a decade, fans had reason to celebrate. Red Bucs flags flapped from car windows. New merchandise wasn't just available at sporting goods stores, but grocery stores and gas stations.

Warrick Dunn was on the cover of Sports Illustrated: 'Break Out the Bucs.'
Ray Perkins and Richard Williamson were far, far behind.

It was the season that began the Bucs run of success that culminated with a Super Bowl title following the 2002 season.

We take a look back at the fortune-changing Bucs' 1997. This time, the defense.

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