The Buccaneers rode into Atlanta looking for their first win of the season against the injury-stricken Falcons. After trailing at one point 24-7, the Buccaneers offense turned things around and made things interesting in the second half. Here is how all of the NFC South action played out today on Twitter. Both teams announced their injured players an hour and a half prior to kickoff. The Falcons would be without starting running back Steven Jackson, had previously lost leading WR Julio Jones to IR, and Roddy White would also be on the sidelines.
The Buccaneers announced their adjustments on the offensive line with G Carl Nicks out, along with RB Jeff Demps.
Buccaneers fans represented the team inside the Georgia Dome, sharing some tweets with the team and the hashtag #itsabucslife. Here are some of their views of this NFC South rivalry.
The Buccaneers defense showed up big to start the game. Lavonte David would get things rolling with an immediate four-yard stop on the first play from scrimmage, leading to a three and out and some early optimism:
On the first offensive drive, rookie quarterback Mike Glennon would experience pressure and fumble the ball, leading to the first points of the contest. Here is how Ledger writer Rick Brown called it:
TD ATL. Glennon fumbles. DeCoud scoops and scores. — Rick Brown (@LedgeronBucs) October 20, 2013
The teams would trade punts, with the fourth quarter ending with the Falcons on top 7-0. The Bucs would receive a scare to start the second. Here's Pat Yasinskas of ESPN:
Dashon Goldson has knee injury. Return is questionable. — Pat Yasinskas (@PatYazESPN) October 20, 2013
Goldson would later return to the game, but not before Atlanta added another touchdown to the board. The Buccaneers official Twitter page provided this update:
It wouldn't be long before the Buccaneers answered back, putting up their first points of the game. Glennon threw a bomb down field to Vincent Jackson who came down with a spectacular grab. Twitter liked it.
Vincent Jackson could only get one arm free from Asante Samuel, but that's all he needed to haul in a 59-yard TD. — Scott Smith (@ScottSBucs) October 20, 2013
Vincent Jackson only needs 1 hand to make absurd TD catches — Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 20, 2013
WOW. TD V-Jax and Bucs. — Rick Brown (@LedgeronBucs) October 20, 2013
That catch by Vincent Jackson. UNBELIEVABLE — FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLONFOX) October 20, 2013
Social media and the analysts on TV would buzz about Buccaneers LB Lavonte David throughout the game. With the Falcons threatening to add seven more points, a David pass breakup and crucial tackle inside the five-yard line would kill the drive. A Falcon FG would make it 17-7. Here is Pewter Report's stat line:
Following a short Buccaneers punt, the Falcons would make even shorter work of adding more points to the board as Harry Douglas would come up with a big play. Pewter Report again summed up the play:
The Buccaneers would end the half with a long drive, ending in three points from Lindell, going into the locker room down 24-10. Here is TBO.com's Roy Cummings:
Rian Lindell's 36-yard FG makes it 24-10 Atlanta at the half. Bucs with a lot of work to do but they can still win this — Roy Cummings (@RCummingsTBO) October 20, 2013
To open the second half, the Bucs would receive the kickoff. The drive would end with a punt, but quickly begin again with a big hit and forced fumble by Brian Leonard on the return. The Bucs would get the ball at the 23 yard line.
To cut the score, the Tampa Bay offense would elect to go for it on fourth down to get into the end zone. Buccaneers.com Senior Writer and Editor, Scott Smith calls the play:
Great job by RB Mike James making the decision to go for it on fourth-and-one from the ATL 3 a good one. — Scott Smith (@ScottSBucs) October 20, 2013
One short play later, Smith would add:
Back-to-back two-TD games for Vincent Jackson after that perfect 1-yard fade. ATL 24, TB 17. — Scott Smith (@ScottSBucs) October 20, 2013
On the short touchdown drive, both teams would be affected by a key injury. NFL: Around The League notes the reports of each team to stars CB Asante Samuel and RB Doug Martin:
The fourth quarter would begin 24-17 with Atlanta on top, but in scoring range. Just 17 seconds in, Rick Brown would comment on another Falcon score, Rodgers' second of the day:
TD ATL. Rodgers on a short pass, slipped a defender and scored. — Rick Brown (@LedgeronBucs) October 20, 2013
Fighting to stay in the game, the Bucs would start the next drive from the 22-yard line. They were stopped twice on fourth down, but elected to go for it. Fox 13 celebrates the momentum:
The Bucs would go all the way to the five-yard line, setting up first and goal, but be pushed back.
Bucs had the ball at the Falcons 5. After a holding penalty on Penn and a 15-yard penalty on Jackson, Bucs have first-and-goal from the 30. — Pewter Report (@PewterReport) October 20, 2013
From the first-and-30, the Bucs would get a glimpse of hope. A six-yard run, 11-yard pass and incompletion would set up their third fourth down attempt, as called by Tom Krasniqi of 620 WDAE:
Glennon finds Underwood for a TD on 4th down! Wait...flag down. Hands to the face penalty on Davin Joseph. UGH. 11 penalties now for TB — Tom Krasniqi (@TKras) October 20, 2013
After the lengthy drive, the Bucs would settle for three, making it an 11 point game. Here again is Roy Cummings:
After all that, Rian Lindell makes a 41-yard Field Goal to make it 31-20. That drive was 9:06, 18 plays, 55 yards — Roy Cummings (@RCummingsTBO) October 20, 2013
A quick stop would get the ball back at the 40 with time winding down.
Defense does it's job. Forcing a 3 and out. — Rick Brown (@LedgeronBucs) October 20, 2013
Two passes to Jackson for 39 yards help set up quick FG at 2 minute warning. Again, Fox 13:
Bucs take a field goal to make it a 8 point game... have to get the ball back, score a TD and get a 2 point conversion - less than 2 minutes — FOX 13 Tampa Bay (@MyFoxTampaBay) October 20, 2013
Down by just one possession, with two minutes left and no time outs, the Buccaneers had to attempt an onside kick. With Tampa Bay looking on, WDAE 620/95.3 FM calls the last-minute effort:
After three kneel-downs, the game would end, 31-23.