So the Bucs made a furious rally in the second half on the road after switching quarterbacks and lost by three? Wait, haven’t we seen this before?
Only this time, Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick reversed the roles of who was committing the turnovers and who was bringing them back.
Four weeks ago at Cincinnati, Jameis Winston threw four interceptions, including a pick-six that got him benched for Ryan Fitzpatrick. The 35 year old pulled some Fitz Magic and led the Bucs back to tie the game up at 34, ultimately losing on a field goal as time expired.
This paved the way for Dirk Koetter to make the decision to stick with Fitzpatrick as the starter for games against Carolina, Washington, and their latest game.
On Sunday against the Giants, it was Fitzpatrick who resumed the role of the constant turnover producer, throwing three interceptions, with two in the third quarter, and one of them also being a pick-six. Fitzpatrick’s final pass of his playing time in the quarter was an interception, just like Winston’s was.
Almost parallel to Cincinnati, Jameis Winston came in the third quarter and went wild to bring the Bucs back in contention. His second touchdown of the game cut the deficit to three by a score of 38-35, but it was too little to late as the Bucs couldn’t get any stops or convert on an onside kick.
When Ryan Fitzpatrick entered the game in Cincinnati, he threw for 194 yards and two touchdowns.
When Jameis Winston entered the game in New York, he threw for 199 yards and two touchdowns.
The similarities are uncanny.
Will Jameis be named the starter much akin to when Fitz was rewarded for his (almost) comeback? We’ll find out soon enough, but a betting man would say so.
But wait, there’s more.
The Bucs defense isn’t off the hook, as they brought the same parallels as well. Again in Cincinnati, the defense let up 135 total yards and two touchdowns to running back Joe Mixon, while Saquon Barkely had 152 and three touchdowns for the Giants. The ground game victimized the defense both times in letting up 30+ points. It was another game where combination of no stops on defense and turnovers by the offense put the Bucs behind the eight ball, only to feverishly fight until the end.
Today’s game against the Giants was almost like a sequel to the Bengals, but it’s a movie that Bucs fans don’t want to see. The biggest question left is who gets the starting job when they face the 49ers at home next week. Tampa Bay is hoping that there’s no trilogy.