There were a couple of impressive individual performances in Tampa Bay’s 34-17 loss at Detroit, but not enough to put more points on the board and keep the Lions from scoring so many. Here is a list of a few Buccaneers whose play stood out against the Lions on Sunday.
MOST IMPRESSIVE BUCCANEERS AT LIONS WR Vincent Jackson
Jackson had a big first half, catching five passes for 81 yards, including a leaping 50-yarder to get the Buccaneers deep into Lions territory. He finished the game with 10 catches for 159 yards, which is a season-high, and bailed Tampa Bay quarterback Josh McCown out in the passing game on several occasions. Jackson also drew a 24-yard defensive pass interference penalty on Lions cornerback Darius Slay.
DE Jacquies Smith
Smith continues to shine with his hustle and speed off the edge. The Bucs’ starting left end recorded two sacks against the Lions, both of which came on third down. Sunday was Smith’s second two-sack game of the season. He now has six sacks on the season, which is second on the team behind Gerald McCoy’s 8.5 quarterback captures.
WR Mike Evans
After not catching a touchdown last week against Cincinnati, Evans came through with his eighth touchdown of the season on a 5-yard catch right before halftime to cut Detroit’s lead to 17-10. Evans finished the first half with three catches for 19 yards. The rookie only had one more reception in the second quarter, but it was a 26-yard touchdown that required a great deal of concentration. Evans now has over 900 yards receiving on the season and 10 touchdowns, which is one shy of the franchise record, which was set by Mike Williams in 2010 during his rookie season.
LB Danny Lansanah
He wasn’t as dominant as he was last week replacing Lavonte David at weakside linebacker, but for the third time in as many weeks, Lansanah played out of position and had a solid game. Lansanah had a game-high eight tackles (seven solo) and a tackle for loss while playing middle linebacker for the first time in place of Mason Foster.
DE Will Gholston
Playing some right end and defensive tackle, Gholston had five tackles, a tackle for loss and a sack, which was his second of the season. The sack was big as it came in the red zone. It was a nice homecoming for Gholston, who hails from Detroit and played college football at Michigan State.
K Patrick Murray
Murray connected on a 54-yard field goal in the second quarter to cut the Lions’ lead to 7-3. That kick was Murray’s fifth kick from beyond 50 yards, which is tied for the second most in a single season. Connor Barth had six. Murray has made three field goals from 54 yards and beyond this year. Only Barth has more in team history (four), and Murray is only a rookie. Murray is now 16-of-20 this season (80 percent) on field goals with two blocked.
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
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