The Buccaneers bid farewell to Raymond James for the next seven weeks with a 32-31 loss at the hands of the New York Giants on Sunday.
In a game that saw Giants quarterback Daniel Jones make his first career start, New York running back Saquon Barkley leave with an ankle injury after 10 rushing yards, and Bucs Shaq Barrett tie a franchise record with four sacks, not everything went as well as planned for Tampa Bay.
These were the Bucs’ most disappointing performances.
K Matt Gay In a game that was decided by one point, Gay left five points on the field, missing two extra points and a 34-yard field goal as time expired that would have won it for the Buccaneers. There is plenty of blame to go around in the crushing loss, but Gay’s gaffes will be scrutinized all week on sports talk radio, around the water coolers and on the internet. Tampa Bay spent a fifth-round pick on Gay to cure the Bucs kicking curse, but after Sunday’d game, Gay is now part of the ugly lore.
After seeing a surprising turnaround through the first two games of the 2019 season, Todd Bowles’ defense on Sunday laid a big egg against the Giants. The Buccaneers accomplished their main goal in stopping running back Saquon Barkley who left in the first half with an ankle injury and just 10 yards, but allowed a rookie quarterback to beat them.
Giants quarterback Daniel Jones competed 23-of-36 passes (61 percent) for 328 yards, two passing touchdowns and two on the ground. Despite Jones being the overall No. 6 pick in this year’s draft, to lose to a team starting a player for the first time in the NFL, at home, with so much on the line, is simply inexcusable.
OT Demar Dotson Dotson was a weak link in an otherwise serviceable offensive line against the Giants on Sunday, getting beat repeatedly and allowing a sack early in the first quarter. He also added a false start penalty on an important drive late in the third-quarter as the Bucs held onto a one-score lead.
S Mike Edwards Edwards is seeing more and more time in the Bucs defense after missing much of training camp and the preseason, but he still has some growing pains to work out. In the third quarter, with Tampa Bay leading 28-10 at the time, Edwards whiffed on a tackle attempt as Evan Engram brought in the reception on an under route and took the play 75 yards for a touchdown. Edwards also had his hands on a ball in the fourth quarter that should have been a pick.
CB Vernon Hargreaves After being listed as one of Pewter Report’s Most Impressive performances in the Bucs’ Week 2 matchup against the Panthers, Hargreaves was one of the team’s most disappointing players against the Giants on Sunday. Hargreaves was beat numerous times in coverage, notably by Darius Slayton on a 47-yard reception in the third quarter that would eventually lead to a New York touchdown – a play that Hargreaves was also penalized on with an illegal hands to the face penalty.
CB Carlton Davis Davis has not only struggled in coverage this year but he’s also had a significant problem avoiding penalties. Where he lacks natural speed and agility, Davis often relies heavily on his physicality and length to impact the receiver close to the line of scrimmage. This type of coverage often leaves him susceptible to drawing flags, which he did on Sunday, as he was penalized for defensive pass interference on a third down play in the first quarter that allowed New York to continue a drive that would eventually end with a touchdown.
– Taylor Jenkins and Mark Cook contributed to this report