Buccaneers criticized on social for women's campaign

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have started a campaign aimed at providing women greater understanding of football. What they didn't anticipate was a backlash from critics on social media who feel the initiative insults the fan base the team is attempting to reach.

A news release announcing the campaign proclaimed RED as ''The Buccaneers Women's Movement'' that will change the way women ''connect with their home team and own their individual football experience.''

The team plans a party next month at Raymond James Stadium, where women will participate in an ''Insider's Talk'' with Bucs general manager Jason Licht. Other activities include tips on ''creative culinary creations'' and game-day fashion, tailgating, and sharing the fan experience on social media platforms.

''RED is a groundbreaking women's movement designed to recognize and celebrate our female fan base,'' Glazer Family Foundation co-president Darcie Glazer Kassewitz said in the release. ''Through exclusive offerings and experiences, our female fans will have the opportunity to not only add to their knowledge of the game they love, but also to help create a community through RED and own the way they enjoy football.''

The announcement Thursday on the team website was met with immediate criticism on social media, taking jabs at the team for assuming women don't know much about football and suggesting they might need tips on what to wear or cook.

The content on the RED website includes player profiles and the RED ''term of the week.'' The inaugural term is ''play clock.''

The Buccaneers declined to comment on the backlash and plan to move ahead with the campaign.

Tampa Bay went 2-14 last season and chose Jameis Winston as the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft. Winston, the star quarterback at Florida State, had a rape accusation dismissed after prosecutors cited problems with a police investigation.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL

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