Buccaneers 20, Saints 10.
Welcome in to the Pewter Plank Halftime Report powered by Fansided.
Tampa is doing their best to erase the 45 point beat down they received from the 49ers last week and who better to take it out on then the New Orleans Saints.
The game started with an injury that halted the game, but the injury took place on the sideline. On a sideline tackle of Jimmy Graham, Saints head coach Sean Payton suffered a pretty serious knee injury that forced him into a brace and to finish the first half coaching from the bench.
The Saints came back from that and scored on a 36 yard touchdown strike from Drew Brees to Marques Colston making it 7-3.
It’s been all uphill from there for the Bucs since.
Josh Freeman hit Arrelious Benn for a 65 yard touchdown strike putting the Bucs up 10-7. Tampa scored again on a Connor Barth field goal and then Freeman threw his second touchdown of the day, this time to Preston Parker for 19 yards. This made the score 20-7 and has given the Bucs an adrenaline shot and the confidence they can beat the Saints at the Ray J for the first time in the Morris-Freeman era.
The other story is the defense and how dominant it has been against the Saints. Tanard Jackson said “I’m Baaaaack” when he intercepted a Drew Brees pass in the second quarter for the first turnover of the day. But the Bucs didn’t stop with that welcome back present. E.J. Biggers got in on the action with a pick and Geno Hayes wanted in as well, forcing a fumble.
That’s three first half turnovers and they’re for the Bucs not against them.
Josh Freeman has recovered from the worst performance of his career last week throwing two touchdowns already and almost 200 yards. The half did end with benched LeGarrette Blount exchanging heated words with Kellen Winslow after a failed drive.
The Bucs had a great first half, but faltered into the half when they let Drew Brees run his offense the length of the field to close the huge gap. Freeman needs to keep making smart decisions and hopefully the sideline conflict with Winslow is nothing serious.
The defense must also keep the heat on the Saints and Brees. Three first half turnovers is great, but it’s nowhere near enough to let up on the Saints. Brees is favoring Marques Colston and Tampa must lock him down. It’s looking good so far, but there is still a whole half left and Tampa better keep up a tough effort if they want to win.