WHAT HAPPENED IN TAMPA BAY’S 38-10 WIN
After leading 7-3 following a largely uneventful first half against Kansas City, Tampa Bay exploded for 31 points in the second half en route to a 38-10 victory. A 19-yard touchdown pass from Josh Freeman to Vincent Jackson increased the Bucs’ lead to 14-3 before free safety Ronde Barber returned an interception 78 yards for a touchdown pushed the score to 21-3 and the route was on.
The victory snapped a three-game losing streak and gives Tampa Bay a 2-3 record on the season. Freeman threw a 62-yard jump ball touchdown pass to wide receiver Mike Williams to give Tampa Bay a 7-3 lead at the half, and then connected on two touchdown passes to Vincent Jackson to help the Bucs put the Chiefs away in the second half.
“Mike has done some incredible things with body control,” Bucs head coach Greg Schiano said. “Mike is an incredible weapon.”
Freeman completed 15-of-26 passes for 328 yards with three touchdowns and one interception and a QB rating of 124.7. Williams finished the day catching four passes for 113 yards and one touchdown, while Vincent Jackson caught four passes for 66 yards and two touchdowns. As Tampa Bay's slot receiver, Tiquan Underwood had two catches for a career-high 68 yards, including a 62-yard jump ball catch-and-run.
“We have our guys chances and they made them play, after play after play,” Freeman said. “We have all the faith in the world in those guys and when we get one-on-one match-ups with guys we’re going to take advantage of it.”
Schiano was proud of Freeman and Tampa Bay’s offense, which rolled up a season-high 463 yards and out-gained Kansas City, which was held to 260 yards of total offense.
“I think it’s a big day for our offense and our team to get back on track,” Schiano said. “I thought Josh kept his cool. … It’s a slow process, but he’s getting better.”
Starting quarterback Matt Cassel didn't dress for Kansas City due to a concussion, and Brady Quinn was ineffective completing 22-of-38 passes for 180 yards with two interceptions.
The Bucs didn’t miss cornerback Aqib Talib, who was suspended for four games for using a performance-enhancing drug, as Barber returned one pick 78 yards for a touchdown, while strong safety Mark Barron recorded his first NFL interception in the red zone to end a potential first quarter Chiefs scoring opportunity.
Tampa Bay's defense did a great job of stopping Kansas City's potent running attack, holding Jamaal Charles to just 40 yards and K.C. to only 80 yards on the ground and a 2.7-yard rushing average.
“I thought the guys did an incredible job,” Schiano said of his defense. “I was really pleased. That was a potent running attack. They threw it more than we thought they would, but to be able to stop that running game and hold them to 80 yards, that’s pretty good.”
The Bucs got both Doug Martin and LeGarrette Blount going on Sunday with Martin rushing for 76 yards on 13 carries (5.8 avg.), including a 23-yarder and Blount rushing for 58 yards, including a 35-yarder and a touchdown on seven carries (8.3 avg.). Martin also had a career-long 42-yard catch on Sunday. The Bucs rushed for a season-high 145 yards on 24 carries (6.0 avg.).
The Bucs had a chance to extend their lead before halftime, but Connor Barth’s streak of 25 consecutive field goals came to an end when his 55-yard attempt in the second quarter hit the upright.HOW DID THE TEAMS SCORE? – BUCS vs. CHIEFS SCORING SERIES
First Quarter – Bucs 7, Chiefs 0
The Buccaneers got on the scoreboard first with 18 seconds left in the first quarter thanks to a 62-yard touchdown bomb from Josh Freeman to Mike Williams. The Bucs receiver jumped over cornerback Stanford Routt and outraced safety Kendrick Lewis for the score to put Tampa Bay 7-0 on a scoring drive that consisted of that lone play.Second Quarter – Bucs 7, Chiefs 3
Kansas City methodically drove down the field using 15 plays to go 59 yards before
Ryan Succop’s 38-yard field goal cut Tampa Bay’s lead to 7-3. Brady Quinn used short passes to Dexter McCluster, Dwayne Bowe and Nick Eachus to drive the Chiefs into the Buccaneers’ red zone.Third Quarter – Bucs 14, Chiefs 3
Doug Martin hauled in a short pass from Freeman and made OLB Justin Houston miss to turn the play into a 42-yard gain down to the Kansas City 19. On the next play, Freeman hit wide receiver Vincent Jackson for a 19-yard touchdown to give Tampa Bay a 14-3 lead at the start of the third quarter.Third Quarter – Bucs 21, Chiefs 3
Quinn’s pass to Dexter McCluster was broken up cornerback E.J. Biggers and free safety Ronde Barber picked off the bobbled ball and returned it 78 yards for a touchdown. That was his ninth career pick-six and gave Tampa Bay a 21-3 lead in the third quarter.Fourth Quarter – Bucs 21, Chiefs 10
Kansas City scored its first touchdown when running back Shaun Draughn blocked a Michael Koenen punt in the end zone. Instead of Koenen falling on the ball and giving up a safety, he picked it up, scrambled out of the end zone and inexplicably threw the ball to Chiefs linebacker Edgar Jones, who returned the ball 11 yards for a touchdown.Fourth Quarter – Bucs 24, Chiefs 10
Tampa Bay drove 69 yards on seven plays, highlighted by Freeman’s 62-yard pass to Tiquan Underwood down to the Kansas City 17. But the Bucs’ drive came up two yards short of a first down at the Chiefs’ 9-yard line and Tampa Bay had to settle for a 27-yard field goal by Connor Barth.Fourth Quarter – Bucs 31, Chiefs 10
The Bucs kept piling on the points in the fourth quarter and got their drive started with a 23-yard run from Doug Martin. Following a 15-yard catch by Jackson, Martin ripped off a 13-yard run and linebacker Jovan Belcher grabbed his facemask to give the Bucs an extra 15 yards. On the next play, Freeman rifled a 17-yard touchdown pass to Jackson to give Tampa Bay a 31-10 lead.Fourth Quarter – Bucs 38, Chiefs 10
Tampa Bay’s final scoring drive was all LeGarrette Blount. After a 2-yard gain, Blount ripped off a season-long 35-yarder down to the Kansas City 16. After a 4-yarder and a run for no gain, Blount scored on a 12-yard run on third-and-6 to increase Tampa Bay’s lead to 38-10.GRUBER INDUCTED INTO BUCS RING OF HONOR
Legendary left tackle Paul Gruber, who was the Buccaneers’ first-round pick and the fourth overall pick in the 1988 NFL Draft, was inducted in the team’s Ring of Honor at halftime of the Tampa Bay vs. Kansas City. Gruber played 12 years for the Bucs before a broken leg near the end of the 1999 season ended his career.
“It is a great honor,” Gruber said, joining defensive end Lee Roy Selmon, former head coach John McKay and tight end Jimmie Giles as Bucs Ring of Honor inductees.
On hand to celebrate with Gruber were members of Tampa Bay’s 1997 Wild Card playoff team, including FB Mike Alstott, RT Jerry Wunsch, QB Steve Walsh, DL Tyoka Jackson, CB Donnie Abraham, DE Chidi Ahanotu, CB Reggie Rusk, RB Errict Rhett, RB Jerry Ellison, LB Derrick Brooks, C Tony Mayberry, RG Jorge Diaz, CB Donnie Abraham, P Tommy Barnhardt, LG Jim Pyne, RT Jason Odom, TE Dave Moore, PR Marvin Marshall, DT Maniecki, DT Brad Culpepper and LB Jeff Gooch. Former Bucs head coach Tony Dungy gave a video tribute to Gruber on the Bucs’ Jumbotron.WHAT WAS NOTABLE ABOUT SUNDAY’S GAME FOR THE BUCS?
Cornerback Ronde Barber got his 221st career start as a Buccaneer, which tied linebacker Derrick Brooks for the franchise record. Barber returned an interception 78 yards for a touchdown, which was the ninth pick-six of his career, and also deflected a first quarter punt by Kansas City. … E.J. Biggers got the start in place of the suspended Aqib Talib at left cornerback. … Jamon Meredith started in place of Ted Larsen at right guard. … Running back Doug Martin had a career-high 55 yards on two catches, including a career-long 42-yarder. Martin’s 23-yard run in the second half was also a career long. … LeGarrette Blount’s 35-yard run was the longest run by any Buccaneer this season. … Mike Williams had his second 100-yard game of the season on Sunday, catching four passes for 113 yards. … Wide receiver Vincent Jackson had his first multiple-touchdown catch game as a Buccaneer on Sunday. … Tiquan Underwood’s 62-yard catch was the longest of his career.WHO WAS THE PEWTERREPORT.COM BUCS MVP?
Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman shook off a less-than-stellar first half in which he completed just 5-of-13 passes (38.4 percent) for 122 yards with one touchdown and one interception to complete 10-of-13 passes (76.9 percent) for 206 yards with two touchdowns in the second half. Freeman finished the game completing 15-of-26 passes for 328 yards with three touchdowns, which matches a career high, and one interception.
Freeman threw a pair of 62-yard passes to Mike Williams and Tiquan Underwood. The pass to Williams went for a touchdown. Freeman also had a 42-yard pass to running back Doug Martin and was selected the PewterReport.com Bucs MVP.WHICH BUCCANEERS WERE INACTIVE?
Bucs' inactives against the Chiefs were: WR Chris Owusu, RB Michael Smith, C/G Cody Wallace, S Keith Tandy, TE Danny Noble, DE Markus White and LB Najee Goode.
Chiefs’ inactives against the Bucs were: QB Matt Cassel, WR Devon Wylie, FS Tysyn Hartman, RB Peyton Hillis, LB Bryan Kehl, C Bryan Mattison and DE Glenn Dorsey.WHICH BUCS GOT HURT?
There were no apparent injuries for the Buccaneers in Sunday’s victory over the Chiefs.WHAT WILL UPSET GREG SCHIANO WHEN HE WATCHES THE FILM?
• Quarterback Josh Freeman’s interception at the Kansas City 14 on Tampa Bay’s first offensive possession squandered a golden scoring opportunity. Freeman was picked off by linebacker Justin Houston on a pass intended for tight end Dallas Clark and that was the start of a very inconsistent first half for Tampa Bay’s QB. Fortunately for the Buccaneers, Freeman’s second half was a different story.
• Linebacker Jacob Cutrera missed a block on Kansas City running back Shaun Draughn and that allowed Michael Koenen’s punt to be blocked in the fourth quarter. To make matters worse Koenen didn’t fall on the ball in the end zone to give up the safety and picked up the ball and threw it errantly into the waiting arms of Chiefs linebacker Edgar Jones, who scored a touchdown.
• Although the team didn’t necessarily miss Aqib Talib, who is serving a four-game suspension for the use of the performance-enhancing drug Adderall, against the Chiefs head coach Greg Schiano can’t be happy with the dumb decision by his starting cornerback. Yet after the game Schiano was asked if he would welcome Talib back after his suspension is served.
“When Aqib’s suspension is up he’ll work hard to be ready and we’ll go from there,” Schiano said.WHAT’S UP NEXT FOR THE BUCS?
Tampa Bay (2-3) finishes off its three-game home stand against New Orleans (1-4) on Sunday, October 21 at 1:00 p.m. The game will be televised on Fox and will be the Buccaneers’ throwback game.
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