Once upon a time, way back in 1976, two expansion teams played the most flag-filled game ever, and Sports Illustrated has a nice story on the day the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Seattle Seahawks combined for 39 penalties and 310 flags.
There were 16 holding penalties. Twice the Bucs were called for having 12 men on the field, and on seven occasions they were faced with second or third down and 20 or more yards to go. McKay was even penalized once himself, for vehemently arguing a call on the field. The New York Times called the game both a “comedy of errors” and “everything it was supposed to be.”
It seems it’s 1976-77 all over again, what with all the stories focusing on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ terrible start. NFL Network did an episode on that 0-26 team just this week, while Jason Vuic wrote a whole book on The Yucks.
The SI story isn’t filled with new information, but there’s some nice quotes in there from players we’ve long since forgotten, like Steve Largent and Steve Spurrier. It’s worth a read if you have a few minutes, and like to reminisce about the time when the Bucs’ losses were still endearing.