TAMPA, Florida – A Citrus County woman is recognized as a die-hard Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan, representing the Bucs as the team’s fan of the year in an NFL competition.
In her 26-year Tampa Bay Buccaneers membership, Wendy Mann hasn’t left much between herself and game day, not even a broken-down car, on the freeway, an hour from home. .
“So he towed me on a hook, dropped me off in my parking spot,” Wendy recalls.
The Crystal River woman’s fire for football started in high school. The Bucs have always been his team, no matter how well they fared.
Wendy Mann is a die-hard Buccaneers fan and is recognized by the team for her fandom
“I’m a fan of a number of players, but I’m a fan of the team. I saw them all come and go and I was in my shoes when they were there and they weren’t there,” said Wendy.
This loyalty and passion for the game earned Wendy a surprise title. She is the Buccaneers nominee for NFL Fan of the Year.
Just to be the nominee, the 56-year-old wins an all-expenses-paid trip for herself and a guest to Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles, along with other perks.
The NFL launched the Fan of the Year contest to celebrate amazing people who inspire others with their love of football and their wit. In the 32 clubs, nearly 35,000 fans have been nominated.
Wendy said she was selected by the Buccaneers from a group of around 4,000 people.
“It’s really moving,” said Wendy. “I feel very honored to have been selected.”
Wendy says she doesn’t consider herself an over the top fan – just dedicated and enthusiastic – and she feels incredibly lucky.
“It’s like the team like me as much as I appreciate them. That’s what it means,” said Wendy.
She is now in the running to be named Ultimate NFL Fan of the Year. One will be announced in February among the 32 nominees per team.
See Wendy Mann’s page on the NFL Fan of the Year website at www.nfl.com/honors/fan-of-the-year/2021/buccaneers.