August 1 Deadline for a few Bears games
NFL sending Bears-Bucs to London, if lockout ends by Aug. 1
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are heading back to London.
For the second time in three seasons, the Bucs will play host to a game at Wembley Stadium, this time against the Chicago Bears on Oct. 23 at 1 p.m. ET.
The NFL confirmed the international game on Monday, and announced it would reveal the complete 2011 regular-season schedule on Tuesday at 7 p.m. ET.
By Dean Mouhtaropoulos, Getty Images
The league is moving forward with the schedule release despite the ongoing lockout that threatens all 2011 games if no deal is reached before the season.
The lockout has forced the league to put a caveat on the London game this season. If the work stoppage isn't resolved by Aug. 1, the game will revert back to Tampa
For the Bucs, who failed to sell out any of their home games last season, the trip to London would renew acquaintances with fans who saw them lose 35-7 to the New England Patriots in 2009.
It would mark the fifth straight year the NFL has played at game at Wembley Stadium. The league had expressed hope of playing two games in Britain in each of the past two years but has not yet been able to execute those plans.
"Our past four games in London have demonstrated the tremendous passion for NFL football that exists in the UK," NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said. "We hope by staging another extraordinary game at Wembley that we can continue to grow our existing fan base and attract even more new fans."
Sending the Bears allows the NFL to offer European fans one of the league's most popular teams from one of America's biggest TV markets.
Also heard that the Bears will skip the HOF game if no deal is reached by Aug 1 as well