The Bucs finally got a preseason win in their final game with a 23-16 win against the Houston Texans.

For all the talk of the Bucs starters playing a half or more the defense was off the field after their second drive and the offense only got three drives. After opening the game with a quick three and out on offense, the defense did its job and held the Texans to the same.

On the next drive it was all Bucs.

Tom Brady led the team on a 91-yard scoring drive, going 7-for-7 on throws to Mike Evans and Antonio Brown, and ending with a Chris Godwin 24-yard touchdown to give Tampa Bay a 6-0 lead. Rookie kicker Jose Borregales’ extra point was blocked.

After a long drive by the Texans, the Bucs held them to a turnover on downs deep in their own territory. From there Brady and the Bucs got right back to work. This time on a 93-yard drive capped by a 13-yard touchdown run by Ronald Jones II to increase the lead to 13-2. Brady had a streak of 10 straight completions, one of them for 32 yards to Godwin.

Bucs RB Ronald Jones II

Bucs RB Ronald Jones II – Photo by: USA Today

That would be it for Brady and the starting offense. Brady would finish the game completing 11-of-14 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown. Jones would be the only starting running back to log a carry rushing for 27 yards on four carries and a 13-yard touchdown. While Godwin led all receivers with 84 yards on three catches and a score. Brown reeled in four receptions for 42 yards, moving the chains often.

On the defensive side, the Bucs surrendered 57 yards on the ground in two series and it was obvious the unit was missing the presence of defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, who missed the game due to COVID-19. Linebacker Lavonte David picked up had a tremendous first quarter with a team-high eight tackles.

It was a rough game for backup QB Blaine Gabbert when he came in for Brady in the second quarter. After an immediate sack, Gabbert threw a pick on the very next play. It looked to be a miscommunication with rookie receiver Jaelon Darden.

Rookie center Robert Hainsey had some struggles snapping the ball on the night. His first game back included a low snap while pinned back against the end zone that resulted in a safety. The offensive line as a whole didn’t give Gabbert much help on the night.

The second team defense had a heck of game, starting with first round rookie pass rusher Joe Tryon-Shoyinka. The Bucs’ first-round pick had four tackles, one for a loss, a strip sack and two QB hits on the night. He looks like the real deal.

Corners Herb Miller and Dee Delaney, who are in competition for the fifth corner spot, both tallied interceptions on the night, Delaney logging two. Safety Javon Hagan, who is battling Chris Cooper, had a sack and a forced fumble on the night as well.

Rookie quarterback Kyle Trask would start the rest of the game after Gabbert came out, and finished 12-14 for 146 yards and a score. He would lead the Bucs on a 78-yard touchdown drive – the first of the QB’s young NFL career. Trask showed good posise in the pocket going through his progressions but did have a fumble on a strip sack.

Overall ball security was a huge issue for the Bucs on Saturday night with four fumbles by three different players – including two by rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn. The Bucs couldn’t get much going on the ground, finishing with only 52 yards on 24 carries. Tampa Bay’s defense struggled stopping the run, allowing 209 yards on the ground. Yet the Bucs did however come up with four fourth down stops including one on the goal line, as well as five takeaways.

Special teams was still a weakness for the Bucs with a fumble on a kick return by Vaughn and a blocked extra point and field goal with poor protection for Borregales.

The preseason comes to a close with the Bucs’ lone win. The team will now turn their attention to Tuesday’s cut down date and rounding out its 53-man roster. The Bucs will kick off the NFL season at home on September 9 against the Dallas Cowboys.

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About the Author: J.C. Allen

J.C. Allen is one of PewterReport.com’s newest beat writers. As a New England transplant, he has closely followed Tom Brady’s entire career and first fell in love with the game during the Patriots 1996 Super Bowl run. J.C. is in his second year covering the team after spending a year with Bucs Report as a writer, producer and show host. Some of his other interests include barbecuing, being outdoors, and spending time with family and friends. His favorite Buccaneer of all time is Simeon Rice and believes he deserves a spot in Canton. Follow J.C. Allen on Twitter @JCAllenNFL.
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chefboho
chefboho
9 months ago

Curious how our expert Dr D feels about Trasks performance or if he’ll just not mention it in his daily rant. The first and second string units appear to be really solid and what can we say about Tryon already? Love watching that kid play. Ready to see this season start with a W against the Cowgirls in two weeks!!

scubog
scubog
Reply to  chefboho
9 months ago

For a player who got very few reps in the practice sessions I observed, I thought Trask showed good poise and control. I especially liked his aggresivness looking downfield instead of losing his composure and freaking out.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  scubog
9 months ago

Trask has a beautiful touch pass, great loft and timing. He also scrambles well once he takes off. He needs to develop that “internal clock” as Ronde Barber put it during the broadcast – that’s something that rookies typically lack and is corrected only with playing experience and game tape study, which I understand he is a glutton for.

Horse
Horse
Reply to  chefboho
9 months ago

pinkstpb, I saw the same thing. Such was missed for sure. I think we might bring in another DT and release McClendon.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  chefboho
9 months ago

Read the comments on “Most Disappointing Bucs” by our resident Trask troll, and you will not be surprised, though you will be annoyed.

I’m juiced that TB-12 shows absolutely no signs of aging, and with his fixed up knee he seems to be throwing the ball with more zip and authority than last year.

Tryon was the steal of the draft for the NFL. He is just so much fun to watch, a guy with that motor who reminds me a lot of Simeon Rice

pinkstob
pinkstob
9 months ago

I said last week let’s revisit how the starters look after this game. I thought they looked pretty good overall. Brady, Godwin and the whole passing game looked outstanding. What I see as a consistent problem in the first game and now this one is the starters can’t stop the run which was a big part of our success last year. Everything else with the starters looks consistent with last year.

Dave
Dave
9 months ago

Watching the replay now. Few things that stand out so far. That 4th down stop we had, on the Texans 2nd possession….we had 2, 4th down stops on that one drive. Refs screwed us on the spot, on that Ingram 4th and 1 carry. No way in hell did he cross the marker. Watching Brady and the passing offense, felt like I was watching Alabama vs Mississippi Valley St. it was completely unfair, and way too easy. AB looked like he regained a lot of his separation, agility, and cutting ability. Evans looked like Evans. Rojo looked great on his… Read more »

Last edited 9 months ago by Dave
Naplesfan
Naplesfan
Reply to  Dave
9 months ago

Agree with you on the refs and what should have been a turnover on downs. Ingram was at least one full yard short of the line to gain when he was brought down.

I agree with everything else you wrote too.