Go, Bucs, go!
Go, Bucs, go!
Hey, Tampa Bay, what do you say?
The Bucs are gonna win today.
Yeah, not so much (and with apologies to Steve Goodman).
Raiders 30 – Bucs 24 (Overtime)
I have to be honest: With the Raiders doing how they’re doing and the Bucs doing how they’re doing, I expected Tampa to take it on the chin today. Instead, my Pewter Pirates held their own (more or less), but an inability to ignite and sustain any decent sustained offensive attack was the Bucs’ greatest failing, starting with a scoring drought that cut a wide swath through the middle of the game and saw the Raiders score fourteen unanswered points while holding Tampa to zilch in the third quarter.
Oakland quarterback Derek Carr held a passing clinic, throwing 40 completions on 59 pass attempts and racking up over 500 yards in the air along with four touchdown passes. That’s just insane. Remember when Kurt Warner used to do that nearly every week with the Rams?
Elsewhere, Bucs QB Jameis Winston had a decent if not spectacular day in comparison, completing 16 of 32 passes for 180 yards and two TDs, and like Carr also threw no interceptions. Unfortunately, Tampa couldn’t seem to find that higher gear and simply sputtered along, rather than finding ways to capitalize on things like the Raiders botching two field goals and setting an NFL record for penalties in a single game (23, for those of you keeping score at home).
While Winston and the Bucs were able to put points on the board in the fourth quarter, it ended up being too little too late, and capped with a heartbreaking loss during the “extra inning” (Yes, I’m in baseball mode, too). Salt in the wound came after the Raiders gave Tampa a chance to put it away after their opening drive in OT with one of those missed field goals we talked about last paragraph. Once again, Tampa’s inability to seize any momentum doomed them.
The loss drops Tampa to 3-4 and tied with the New Orleans Saints for second place in the NFC South Division. The Saints notched their own win against the Seahawks, while Atlanta squeaked by Green Bay to hold on to first place. Even Carolina got in on the action, with the Panthers dropping the Arizona Cardinals.
#ProTip: When everyone but you is winning in your division, this carries the potential to be a Very Bad Thing(tm). FYI.
Next up for the Bucs? It’s a short week, as they prepare to take on those same Atlanta Falcons down in Tampa on Thursday night. At this point in the season, wins against division rivals are critical, particularly with the field so crowded and playoff tie-breaker scenarios already starting to spin up.
Meanwhile, I’m just hoping my boys put on a good showing in front of a national audience.
Bucs Life: Grr. Argh.