The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-11) continued their losing ways this week against the Carolina Panthers (11-4). Who were the winning and losing players from the contest?
Few teams are better at the art of the “competitive loss” than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Bucs are well-versed in all styles of losing, but they’re especially talented at keeping games just close enough to lose them in heart-breaking fashion at the end. Jameis Winston and the Bucs had Cam Newton and the Panthers right where they wanted them…until they didn’t. With 35 seconds remaining on the clock, Newton rushed for what would be the game-winning score shortly before a third Winston fumble made it official.
As is the case in all competitive losses, there were a lot of positive takeaways for the Bucs in this game. Winston had another terrific performance, the defense was mostly stout, and Donovan Smith continued his strong finish to the season. As is also the case with all competitive losses, the Bucs lost, and thus there are plenty of ugly things to discuss. It’s Christmas though, so let’s start with the good stuff.