The Buccaneers blew a 20-7 halftime lead – seemingly on purpose – to the New Orleans Saints to finish the season 2-14 and with possession of the 2015 number one draft pick. Tampa Bay was in firm control of the game in the first half, racking up 248 yards of total offense before producing a paltry 32 yards in the second half. Here is a look at some of the disappointing players in Sunday’s loss.
MOST DISAPPOINTING BUCCANEERS VS. SAINTS CB Leonard Johnson
Despite the fact that Johnson grabbed an interception in the second quarter off a deflection and had two tackles, Johnson missed a tackle on Saints wide receiver Marques Colston’s 36-yard touchdown with 1:57 left in regulation. That score gave New Orleans a 21-20 lead with less than two minutes remaining.
LT Demar Dotson
The Buccaneers left tackle played quite well in the running game, but he had two costly holding penalties in the second half that negated a 10-yard run by Doug Martin in the third quarter, and a 17-yard catch by Charles Sims on Tampa Bay’s final possession.
RT Kevin Pamphile
The rookie tackle fared well as a run blocker at right tackle and at tight end, but appeared to whiff on blocking Saints outside linebacker Junior Galette, who sacked Josh McCown in the end zone for a game-clinching safety with 1:10 left in the game.
WR Tavarres King
The young wide receiver caught the first two passes of his career for 13 yards, but saw a catchable pass on third-and-5 slip out of his hands and into the arms of Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis, who returned the pick to the 50-yard line and set up New Orleans’ go-ahead touchdown.
Scott Reynolds is in his 25th year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org