The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense found their stride early in the second half, but it wasn’t enough as the Atlanta Falcons squeaked by with the victory.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made the Atlanta Falcons sweat, but their comeback effort fell short as the Falcons escaped with a 34-29 win.
Jameis Winston drove the offense to the Atlanta 21 yard line with 12 seconds left on the clock. A wild lateral play ended just short of the end zone, but the Buccaneers offense had nothing to be upset about, the defense let the team down yet again.
Trailing by nine late in the fourth quarter, Jameis Winston led the offense down the field to cut the Falcons lead to two.
Matt Ryan would get his chance to shut the door 3:47 left in regulation. Actually, Matt Bryant was the one who shut the door with an impressive 58-yard field goal attempt with 1:10 left in regulation.
Why did the Bucs get rid of him again?
Ryan would succeed as the Buccaneers defense couldn’t make that one play to give Winston a chance to win the game. Although they improved in the second half, the defense folded late.
Winston put together a solid performance. Despite his two interceptions, Winston threw for 395 yards and four touchdowns.
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After a score to open up the fourth quarter, Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense responded immediately. The defense opened the second half with three stops, but four was too much to ask for.
With just under seven minutes to play, Ryan found running back Tevin Coleman for six. Atlanta made it a two-possession game and essentially sealed the win.
The fourth quarter opened up with a Buccaneers touchdown. Winston connected on his third touchdown pass of the day with Chris Godwin, which cut the lead down to two points. The Bucs failed the two-point conversion and the Falcons grasped to a 24-22 lead.
Turnovers have marred Winston since his career began. He threw two interceptions in the contest. The worst of the two came on in the end zone after Winston tried to squeeze the ball into double coverage.
The pass popped straight off of the defender’s helmet and into the arms of Brian Poole. Winston’s interception ended the first of two failed red zone appearances to open the second half for Tampa. The second trip netted the Bucs three points, but that wasn’t enough to keep up with Atlanta’s high-powered attack.
Following the second half kickoff, the Buccaneers did the unthinkable. The defense forced a three-and-out. Down by nine points, the Bucs had the perfect opportunity to get back into the ball game.
Atlanta’s final drive in the first half showed how bad the Buccaneers defense could be. With only 26 seconds before halftime, the Falcons ended up driving down the field and into field goal range.
Matt Bryant would send it through the uprights and give Atlanta a 24-13 lead at the end of the first half. Despite a decent start offensively, the defense allowed the Falcons to score on four of five drives.
The first half was an atrocious display for the Tampa Bay defense. Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan completed 20-of-24 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown.
Before anyone could blink, Tampa Bay was up 6-0. That’s the only lead the Bucs would enjoy, as the Falcons went on to shred a terrible defense.
The Buccaneers were hot right out of the gate with an eight-play, 75-yard touchdown drive. Barber had his longest run of the season for 28 yards, and Winston found Cameron Brate for a touchdown reception.