Each preseason, the NFL puts out a list of how many miles each team will travel for road games during the regular season.
This year, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the easy winners in the NFC South. They’re scheduled to fly 22,974 miles. That’s sixth overall in the league and they trail only the West Coast teams (49ers, Seahawks, Chargers, Raiders and Cardinals), who almost always lead the league in travel. Tampa Bay’s got one long trip that pads their total a bit. That’s the October “home’’ game against Chicago in London.
The rest of the NFC South ranks near the bottom of the league in travel miles this season. Carolina (11,246) is No. 25. Atlanta (11,118) is No. 26 and the real total for the Falcons might even be a little less. The distance for all of Atlanta’s trips is calculated from Hartsfield-Jackson Airport. But coach Mike Smith has decided to take buses to Charlotte in recent years. If the Falcons do it again, you can knock about 45 miles off their total because they’ll be leaving from their Flowery Branch facility.
The New Orleans Saints are No. 28 and have to travel 10,380 miles.