Football weather is different depending on where you live. In Tampa Bay, low 80s with low humidity is about as good as you’re going to get at Raymond Jame Stadium on a Sunday afternoon in September, and that made for a great set up to the Bucs’ Week 3 game against the New York Giants.

The Giants won the toss and elected to defer to the second half. That meant it would be up quarterback Jameis Winston and the Buccaneers offense to get this game started — and they did just that in a big way.

On a 10-play, 75-yard drive that included 53 passing yards to wide receiver Mike Evans, Winston led the offense down the field quickly for a 6-0 lead (after kicker Matt Gay missed the ensuing extra point).

The national story of the day was that Giants rookie quarterback Daniel Jones was getting his first start. Jones did a nice job of running the offense and adapting to pressure on his first drive, taking the Giants down the field 57 yards in 11 plays to get them in field goal range. That brought the score to 6-3.

Winston and company followed up their touchdown drive with yet another. A perfectly called screen pass to running back Ronald Jones got the Bucs in New York territory, and a long O.J. Howard catch followed by a quick strike to Evans got the ball over the end zone line once again. However, the extra point was blocked and the score was only able to go up to 12-3 in favor of Tampa Bay.

On Jones’ next drive for the Giants, he took them down the field 75 yards in 12 plays to match the Bucs most recent score in the end zone. Jones did a great job dealing with the Bucs pressure in his face, and was able to deliver some clutch passes to guys like Evan Engram and Sterling Shepard. In the end, Jones took it himself and scored on a short run. The Bucs lead was just 12-10.

Tampa would score two field goals on their next two drives, bringing the score to 18-10. On their next possession, Winston hit Mike Evans for a third time in the end zone to bring the score to 25-10. Another field goal from the Buccaneers and the score went into the half 28-10.

The Bucs may have gone to the half in full control, but Jones and the Giants weren’t done yet. On their first play of the second half, Jones hit Engram for a 75-yard touchdown with a 2-point conversion to bring the score to 28-18. And on their next drive, Jones led the Giants, who were without Saquon Barkley, down the field 80 yards in eight plays for yet another score. This brought the game to a 3-point, 28-25 contest.

After that the game would slow down a bit, and by slow down we mean that Buccaneers defensive end Shaq Barrett would completely take over and dominate the Giants offense to the tune of four sacks. This put Barrett atop the NFL sack list with eight on the season through just three games.

When the Bucs took over, they were able to bleed some fourth quarter clock and get into field goal range. Gay was able to make his fourth field goal of the day to bring the score to 31-25 in favor of Tampa Bay.

The Giants went three-and-out on their next drive, giving possession back to Tampa Bay with a chance to really bring the clock down, now under five minutes left to play. The Bucs had a strong first down run, but were not able to cross the line to gain and were force to punt it back to New York.

The Giants started off their drive with passes to Sterling Shepard, Darius Slayton and Evan Engram to get them to midfield. Then a blown coverage assignment left Shepard wide open once again for a 36-yard gain. This got them within striking distance. After a few stops on defense, Jones scooted into the end zone untouched the give the Giants their first lead of the game 32-31.

When the Bucs took over, a sack on the field play didn’t look good. But two back-to-back big passes to Chris Godwin and Mike Evans got them within Matt Gay field goal range.

But it was no good.

Bucs lose 32-31.

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]

69 COMMENTS

  1. WTF did I just watch?

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    • You watched your team do what they are good at…LOSING!

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    • What The Buc; a poor kicker that can’t handle the pressure and needs to be cut and we need to find a new one now!

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  2. Total embarrassment!!!!

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    • MizzouBuc24; nope, just a bad kicker.
      This is an easy fix.

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  3. Going to sit this one out boys, blood pressure too high.

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  4. New year same bullshit with this team. I am so over kickers costing us games its bordeline insanity. What a joke! The defense deserves some blame also. How the hell do you let a rookie qb ,with no saquon in the game carve you up? Pathetic, absolutely pathetic.

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    • Bucs history with rookies and backup quarterbacks should have prepared you for what happened.

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    • That’s why I get zutied..completely snockered when I watch this team. That way you become..NUMB and can take the lost lying down..like I’m doing right now.

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    • Cgmaster27, we can resolve this by cutting the kicker and getting another one.

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  5. Our kicking woes continue!!! That was utterly ridiculous!! What a waste of an effort from Shaq Barrett. Damn this team, they always find a way to lose!! Can’t blame Winston on this one. And now, 5 long weeks of very possible losses for all the games

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  6. I AM SO SICK OF THIS LICHT YOU STUPID IDIOT!!!!!!!!!! WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO LEARN?????? You DO NOT start Rookie kickers. You dumb no nothing fool. I can’t take this cap anymore. This guy needs to be cut tonight!!!!!!!! That just cost of the season!

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    • I’m sorry, but that may be the dumbest thing I’ve ever read on here. Matt Gay was one of the few reasons we were in position to win the game. He simply turfed the kick, happens to the best of them. Even with putting that divot in the field he almost made it.
      What cost us the game is going too damn conservative in the second half, both sides of the ball.
      I get it, on offense, do what you can to eat the clock and keep the opposing offense on the sideline. That’s when you really make use of slants, flats and screens. Short yardage, high percentage plays gets the defense up and waiting for those outside-the-hash plays. Follow suit of what the D is reading and hit the RB delay or RB fake with a delayed bootleg.
      If you’re gonna go so conservative, that should be the method.
      Then this going to quarters defense…. I don’t even know what to say about that.
      Anyhow, got long winded. The point is, this was not on the kicker

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      • GrayBalls – I totally agree with your assessment of the conservative play calling in the second half. The game should never have depended on a field goal. However, Matt Gay is not getting the job done when it counts. Yes, he has done better than his predecessors. However, he has an issue with chip-shots within 35 yards – hooks them or comes close to hooking them. He’s also punching divots way too much – he got lucky on a fw kicks this season after punching a divot. I’m not ready to throw in the towel on him (far from it), but Matt has to get more consistent on short kicks and work out his hook/divot problem. Tonight one of the missed extra points was blocked – not because Gay kicked low – but because the O-line didn’t step up. However, the other one was his problem – a problem he has had several times this season. The last field goal miss was all on him. Rookie or not, NFL kickers shouldn’t be punching divots as much as he has this season. Like it or not, kickers are paid the make the game winning shots. If they don’t, their lifespan in the NFL is short. A few more missed “easy” shots and Gay may be looking for employment elsewhere before the season is over. Hopefully tonight will light a fire in him to work harder, stay on the practice field a little longer and take the extra time to overcome the flaw in his game.

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  7. Lets this be a learning experience that this team still does not have a killer instinct to finish games. Lots of promising things I saw today, but also lots of work to be done. Go Bucs!

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  8. Also let me say that Licht’s future looks very dark right now. I don’t see a way for Licht to recover from this unless Arians can pull this team to together to finish the season strong.

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    • Why does he care…his contract is guaranteed

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      • True and that is unfortunate.

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  9. Absolutely no excuse, even before Gay blew it! A 1st time starting about…no Barclay…18 point lead at half… this ranks up there with the Jet loss in 20-13, Colts in 2003, and Raider loss in 2008 as one of the worst ever

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  10. Props to Shaq who probably will want to go to a contender next year. Props to Jameis (even with the 1 pick) and Evans.

    Gay needs to go.

    Leftwich needs to not let the foot off the gas.

    This is a bad product, and I feel for the pockets of talent that can’t overcome bad decisions and choke artistry.

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  11. Kinda sad fellow fans. Real sad. Butt..we had plenty of opportunities to win this one. Yes, the FG miss sucked but we got scared after jameis threw that 1st interception. And like I’ve been preaching here, We need more pass rush on the 4 man D front. We passed on 2 free agents over the last month who certainly could have helped us there. Again, we lived UP to our rep..making rookie or backup QB’s look all world. TheNY kid is going to be good people. Real tough loss here. I will finish my scotch and look forward to Monday. To hell with us looking promising. We look promising every game. The record books say WE LOST.

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  12. MATT GAY FUCKING SUCKS

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    • The loss is on Byron Leftwich and Jameis Winston for believing winning the first half is all you need to do. Awful, conservative, ineffective offensive playcalling in the 2nd half, and a terrible Jameis INT. Should not have been close enough to lose from a missed FG. Blow this franchise up.

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      • That loss was on Matt gay. He also left 2 points off the board with his missed kicks from fg attempts. Jameis played well aside from the pick, but you can blame leftwich for letting off after the first half.

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      • That pick didnt go for points and jameis isnt calling plays ,so please tell us again how this is on jameis? Did you just miss the end of the game when he got us in scoring position? Make a chip shot fg and we win.

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        • Slow, indecisive, take sacks, throw a pick. Yeah, Jameis played the 2nd half to win for sure.

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  13. An inexcusable loss. So tired of being a fan of a team that finds a way to lose. Missed kicks, extra points, defense getting beat by a damn rookie. This team is just shit. Jameis and the offense played a great game. This team just can’t put it together on both sides of the ball. Just a damn shame. And you have Carolina and the saints winning with backups in.

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    • Told you boys long ago the Bucs need to concentrate on what got them their 1st superbowl. A stout D line and a mean a..Linebacker. That NYC rookie had lots of time to throw. Lots of time.

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    • Imagine that!
      The Chef is tired of losing!

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      • That’s never changed since I’ve been a fan short of them winning the super bowl. So what’s your point BAB other than nothing as usual?

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    • FG Kicker Sucks! but it should have never been left to him to make a play, The offensive play calling in the second half cost us this game. Leftwich completely went away from what was working and started playing tight, the same stuff we seen from Koetter last 3 years.

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      • Agreed. I’m so tired of first down and a run up the middle. The play calls were so soft and completely out of whack with what worked in the first half. Stop playing to loose!!!

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  14. Presently we have seen enough of our kicker! This is a reason why you do not draft punters or kickers. Time to find another kicker immediately; it was his loss plain and simple. Two missed extra points and an easy field goal means you can’t handle the pressure.
    Everybody else played a good game and deserved to have the win.

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    • Agree Cairo Santos didn’t have a bad camp and is tested in games. Accuracy >Power.

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  15. Awful play calling in 2nd half. Ultra conservative and settling for FG’s will just about always get you beat.

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  16. Does anyone else think that is was stupid to take a 5yd Delay of Game penalty that moved the ball to basically the same distance that your kicker struggled on the Extra Points? 5yds closer and that kick stays inside the right goalpost.

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    • I agree you need to help your rookie out.

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    • Yeah why take a 5 yard delay and then another 2 yds of Winston downing the ball to get in the middle of the hash marks. 7 yards we could have used

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  17. Like I said, I’ve seen this movie before. Secondary fixed, nope, we have a kicker, nope. I guess we’ll be drafting more DB’s, and a kicker next year. Then there’s Winston. All pro first half, second half it got so bad after the pick, they took the ball out of his hands. What happened to the biscuit crap? Run, run, run, no shot at the end zone to put the game away. We crawled up into a little turd, and put the game on our rookie kicker. The same kicker who missed a PAT, and had one blocked. Did Dirk Koetter call the last two series? There’s a new young hero QB making a name for himself. No it isn’t Jameis Winston, it’s Danny Jones, the new Buc slayer.

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    • Stupid..you don’t need more DB’s You need two very good DE’s.

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      • This. Build up the trenches. Why this team avoids the obvious path to success baffles all of us.

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  18. We can blame the kicker, and we should, but the Bucs have a defense they have been piling first and second round picks into as well as adding high priced free agents and they gave up 32 points to a shitty team, with a rookie QB making his first start, and their superstar sitting on a bench. It should have never came down to the kicker.

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  19. We are who we thought we are – (5-11) or (6-12). We seen what we thought we seen, OC is in way over his head, takes a game plan, unable to adjust, plays it close to the vest and allows a team with a rookie QB, no high-class running back and still allows them to come back and show the world who the Bucs are. Risk or Biscuit, how about run scared and stale bread. I guarantee I will not watch another Bucs game this year. If PR allows me to quit (tried many times; however, they want to keep their subscription list up), I will never again log-in, comment, or read any Bucs forum. Sick & Tired or being Sick and Tired. BA can ride his golf cart out to pasture.

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  20. I’m sitting here enjoying a scotch and Pink Floyd’s..Comfortably Numb.

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  21. FSU homer and I thought Winston played perfect 1st half, but not impressed the 2nd half aside from the last drive. 2nd half he took too many sacks and had the bad interception. Why can’t he put together complete games on a consistent basis. He did play well enough overall to win this game though. I just want to see it done every game. Not for a game or two then have a stinker like the first game. He teases us just enough to want to keep him around because we’re afraid that he go lead another team to a Superbowl like the others have.

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  22. Stop blaming a kicker and our QB. Bucs ran on 1st down 44% of times in first half and scored 28 points. They ran on 1st down 90% of second half before final drive and scored 3 points. That is an OC fail!

    Setting up for a FG Vs a TD? Weak. Where’s my biscuit?

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    • Precisely Damian, Its inexcusable for Mike Evans to have only been targeted 4 times in the 2 half. This lost is squarely on the Junior OC. Sorry but Leftwhich cost this game.

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  23. Tale of 2 halves. We dominated the 1st half. Big Mike was over 100 and 3 TDs. 2nd half offense couldn’t get it done. The Giants came out and 75 yard TD first play of 2nd half. So damn disappointing with this one. Even when we have a opportunity to close this game out we choke. Gay left 5 points out there. It’s obvious we are in for another long year. We find ways to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. It’s getting close to look towards the draft again before October.
    #itsabucslife

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  24. Team sucks-should really be 0-3 right now. Someone said it best…same shit different year- blow it up and take the Glazers with it. Embarrassing to the city of Tampa!

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  25. The team is most definitely better than last year. I saw a lot of good things out there except for our kicking game.
    This can be resolved by bringing in another kicker and letting the present one go because he cannot handle the pressure.
    The coaching is better; Offense and Defense is better; are kicking sucks!
    What’s not going to get better is this kicker.
    The Giants quarterback Jones is going to be a very good quarterback in the NFL and I give him all kinds of kudos for it. He beat us at the end because we don’t have a kicker.
    This team can rebound, but we must have a new kicker. I know that’s a cold statement to make but he’s our biggest problem presently.

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    • I agree that this team will be competitive with a better kicker. But the rest of the team needs to learn to finish games. It is obvious they are not there yet as a whole team.

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    • When you need the kicker to beat a bad Giants team, you are a bad team. Bad GM, bad coaching, bad QB. Who are we going to beat the rest of the way?

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  26. When you lose to one of the worst team in football what does that make you?

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    • I’ll answer this one truefully BAB That makes us..LOSERS. Especailly when teams travel all the way from Frisco and NYC to whip your A** in your stadium.

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  27. I just don’t even know what to say. Up 18 at the half and we took our foot off the gas. Matt Gay should be looking for a new job tomorrow. It’s so tough being a fan of the Bucs. I’ve been riding with this team since the inception of it. I guess I’m a glutton for punishment. A friend of mine told me he took the Bucs in this game and I told him I wouldn’t have that this game scared me because we have a long history of losing games like this. So now we go 49 days before they return to Tampa. This isn’t going to go well. Look, I like Bowles as the coordinator but why did you back off the blitzes the last drive? Can put this one on Winston, yeah he had one bad pass that was picked. But overall he played damn good!! This loss is a tough one to swallow.

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  28. It’s not hyperbole to say that was the lost loss I can ever remember…until someone here posted about the Colts loss in 2003. That one is still the worst but not by much. I’m so mad I could spit ink! This loss will live on forever for so many reasons. It launches Daniel Jones’ career. I’m still getting texts from Giants fans I haven’t seen or spoken to in years. They didn’t have S. Barkley. We had a substantial lead most of the game. We placed the ball right in the middle of the field for a kicker we spent a 5th round draft pick on. We f*$ked this game up on so many levels.

    Yeah Gay sucks but this loss is also on this sorry ass CB’s I keep telling you guys about every week. Win or lose Hargreaves is getting beat repeatedly on the outside and PR actually put him on the Most Impressive list last week. This week it’s more of the same but since we lost maybe PR will finally write him. Move him inside to nickel CB or any team with even average WR’s will beat us deep.

    I’m so miserable…

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    • I know I had a bunch of typos above but I didn’t feel like correcting them. Too angry…

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    • Hey Pinkstob, Todd Bowles defensive alignment put the corners in poor coverages. The CB’s are fine but Bowles got exposed a little bit being a little too aggressive.

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  29. Every time it looks like we have a decent kicker, one of our bonehead GM’s get rid of them for somebody they think is better!

    Matt Bryant replaced by Mike Nuggent
    Connor Barth replaced by Roberto Aguayo
    Cairo Santos replaced by Matt Gay

    How does this keep turning out?

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    • Santos looked like he had a stronger leg since he was not doing kick offs any longer.

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  30. That’s it. I am done. We have a six point lead, a supposed defensive guru and we give up a touchdown to a rookie QB in his first NFL start. Hang your head in shame boys.

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  31. This loss is on bad DB play and yet another kicking disaster. Gay already missed a few kicks this season that didn’t kill us, but that 34-yard miss was inexcusable and an absolute killer. I doubt Licht wants to release Gay this soon since it means admitting he made another poor draft selection. His ego won’t allow it. No, I think we will be watching Gay kick for a few more weeks. Oh how I envy the teams with good, reliable kickers!

    I really want to take a minute to tip my hat to all the REAL Buc fans out there. Losses like this are all too familiar in recent years, yet you keep coming back for more. Hang in there, there will be better days ahead!

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  32. BRUTAL

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  33. Would love to know if it was Leftwich or Arians calling the second half? It was like bipolar offense. First half was pretty good play calling – foot on the pedal. Second half – no gas.

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  34. I am not sure I would cut Gay. He hit three kicks and missed one. He hit a 52 yarder and a 47 yarder. Being trigger happy on cutting kickers is not the answer…yet.
    I think we also have some problems on Defense. Jones looked like a hall of fame QB against our defense. And he was sacked 4 times? Didn’t throw an interception, and he seemed to slice and dice our secondary.

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  35. The kicker had a bad game, but it should not have come down to him. This team needs to have a step on the other teams throat mentality when they are ahead. The best prevent defense is one that the offense keeps scoring. The offense needs to be smarter and stay focused. I feel bad for Shaq…what a waste of a dominant performance.

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  36. Ok I’m not gonna be Mr. Popular on this one but we’re not that bad. Let’s realistically look at this game. A brand new QB with no game tape to study on him, we stopped Barkley like we were supposed to do, we got up and lost the lead, however this team kept fighting. This team didn’t lay down when the Giants made their comeback. We fought all the way to the end.
    Let’s say we cut our kicker like some have said, then what? That’s not worked out well for us at all. Santos was a good kicker inside of 50 yards. Past 50 yards is when he had his struggles. It was shown that his leg strength wasn’t where it’s supposed to be.
    The coaching staff did go conservative in the second half but the majority of teams also do that. Can’t fault the coaches for wanting to preserve the lead and run clock off.
    Leftwich is in his first year calling plays. He’s gonna make mistakes, it’s to be expected, but it’s also a learning experience for him.
    Our pass coverage needs work but our defense is head and shoulders above where it was a year ago and it will improve.
    Hats off to Ronald Jones, Shaq Barrett, Mike Evans, and Jameis Winston. They played a hell of a game and showed that they are for real. Winston has improved and he’s showing a lot more growth and maturity under this staff than under Koetter’s.
    Next week is gonna be a huge challenge for us and I for one am excited to see what this season brings.
    Also for those wondering, we’re still better than the Falcons, and the Panthers. This division is still up in the air and we have a shot still

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    • LMAO here. KR79..save that shot. You’re gonna need a lot of them before this season is over. I had about 12..on the rocks while watching these Bucs. I saw it coming all week though. Got up the 1st halve and went down hard the 2nd. Get yourself a real tall shot glass. Have one handy for the LA Rams. It will make the upcoming loss….more palpitable. Oh Yeahhh we still got a shot alright..right down the ole hatch.

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  37. I can’t even believe there’s seriously people in here blaming Jameis. He is NOT the reason we lost. He’s not even in the top 10. He threw for 380 yards, with 3 TD’s and 1 pick. The one pick he threw was on 3rd and 5 on the 35. Even if he threw the ball away, is a single person here seriously convinced that Gay was gonna hit a 50+ yard FG with how bad he was? And the Giants fumbled 2 plays later. So that pick cost them most likely 0 pts for or against. They lost because of 3 reasons. Leftwhich, every defensive player not named Barrett, and Gay. If Gay just hits all his XP’s like every other Kicker in the league does, everything else is moot. Bucs win. Leftwhich playcalling has sucked all year. You have Evans abusing Janoris Jenkings, Howard not being stopped by Giants LB’ers, and your stud #2 WR being targeted 4 times. Enough of this Peyton Barber crap. Jones should have seen 90% of the carries, and should have been way more involved in the passing game. Chris Godwin should never ever ever see 4 friggen targets in a game. When Barber out-looks Godwin 15-4, this offense has a serious problem. This team needs to limit the touch tree and start getting the ball in the hands of your biggest playmakers. Aka Evans, Godwin, Howard, and Jones. Stop wasting 15 touches on Peyton Barber. Leftwhich is killing this team. As is kicking for what the 8th straight year. But outside of Gay, this game falls on the defense. You seriously let a rookie QB making his first career start, on the road, with ZERO threat of a running game, trailing by almost 3 TD’s at the half, come back to beat you? That’s on you Bowles. In order it’s Bowles, Gay, Leftwhich, then the OLine. Those are your 4 biggest culprits from this epic puke job. I just don’t get this team sometimes. Year after year the in game adjustments are almost non existent. Godwin with 2 catches for 20 yards 3/4 the way through the 4th quarter. How does that ever happen? Yet him and Ronald Jones can’t see the ball anywhere near enough so we can see Peyton Barber run for 2 or 3 yards and force 0 missed tackles. When is enough enough?

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