Leonard Fournette, who became known as 'Playoff Lenny' and then eventually 'Lombardi Lenny' during his brilliant postseason run last winter, earned a new nickname on Sunday. The modified Lenny line was coined by his teammate, Rob Gronkowski and it's…something. In fact, let's just let Gronkowski explain it himself:
Gronkowski felt like Fournette needed a new callout after the latter made franchise history with a four-touchdown outing in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 38-31 at Indianapolis in Week 12. Fournette became just the third Buccaneer ever to score that many touchdowns in a single game, and he was the first to have a four-score game that included TDs on rushes and receptions.
Most Touchdowns, Single Game, Buccaneers History
|Leonard Fournette||RB||at Indianapolis||11/28/21||3||1||4|
|Doug Martin||RB||at Oakland||11/4/12||4||0||4|
|Jimmie Giles||TE||at Miami||10/20/85||0||4||4|
Fournette also tied Martin and Giles for the most points scored in a single game in franchise history, with 24. Surprisingly, he was the first Buccaneer to score even one touchdown each on the ground and through the air in more than six years. The last to accomplish that feat was Martin with two rushing and one receiving against Jacksonville on October 11, 2015.
Fournette's final touchdown was the game-winner, a 28-yard jaunt with 20 seconds left that showed off the best of his combination of size, speed and determination. Safety Isaiah Rodgers was the last defender in Fournette's path as he barreled towards the goal line, and all Rodgers could do was take a two-yard ride back into the end zone. That 28-yarder gave Fournette exactly 100 rushing yards on the day and was the first 100-yard rushing performance for the Buccaneers this season. It was also just the fourth time in team history that a player combined 100 rushing yards with a rushing touchdown and a receiving touchdown.
Games with 100+ Rushing Yards, Rushing TD, Receiving TD, Bucs History
|Player||Opp.||Date||Yards||Rush TD||Rec. TD|
|Leonard Fournette||at Indianapolis||11/28/21||100||3||1|
|Doug Martin||at Minnesota||10/25/12||135||1||1|
Gronkowski did more than just make up catchy nicknames on Sunday. He was also a huge part of the offense, leading all players with seven catches for 123 yards. No other Buccaneer had more than 31 receiving yards in the game. This was Gronkowski's highest single-game yardage total since joining the Buccaneers last season and his second 100-yard game in a Tampa Bay uniform. It was, however, the 30th 100-yard game of his illustrious career, and only one tight end has done that more often.
Most 100-Yard Receiving Games, Tight End, NFL History
Wide receiver Chris Godwin had four catches for 24 yards in the game, and while that was his lowest yardage total of the season it was still enough to move him up yet another spot on the Bucs' all-time receiving yardage list. So far this season, Godwin has jumped from 12th to fourth on the team's all-time receptions list and, at 311, he needs only 11 more to pass Mark Carrier (321) for third. Before Sunday's game, he had already gone from eighth to fifth on the team's all-time receiving yardage list in 2021, and now he's taken over fourth place.
Most Receiving Yards, Buccaneers History
Fournette's four-yard scoring grab in the second quarter was the only touchdown pass of the game for Tom Brady, which snapped a streak of six straight games with multiple TDs for him. However, it still gave him 30 touchdown passes on the season and he continues to lead the NFL in that category in 2021.
2021 NFL Leaders in Touchdown Passes
This marks the ninth time in his career that Brady has hit the 30-touchdown mark in a season, and only Drew Brees has done that more often.
Most Seasons with 30-Plus Touchdown Passes, NFL History
(* These indicate the teams with which the quarterback had his 30-touchdown seasons and the season span in which those occurred, not their entire NFL careers.)
Brady amassed 226 yards on 25-of-34 passing against the Colts, increasing his 2021 passing yardage total to 3,403. That ranks second in the NFL by a slim margin and is the most through 11 games of a season in Buccaneers history.
2021 NFL Leaders in Passing Yardage
Most Touchdown Passes Through First 11 Games of a Season, Bucs History
Tampa Bay's 38 points on the afternoon in Week 12 increased their total 2021 point total to 347, or 31.5 points per game. The Buccaneers are currently the NFL's highest-scoring team.
Most Points Per Game, NFL Teams, 2021
1. Tampa Bay: 31.5
2. Buffalo: 29.6
3. Dallas: 29.6
4. Indianapolis: 28.3
5. Arizona: 28.2
Those 347 points also mark the most a Tampa Bay team has ever scored through the first 11 games of a season. This marks the third year in a row that the Bucs have set a new high in that category.
Most Points Through First 11 Games, Buccaneers History
1. 2021: 347
2. 2020: 320
3. 2019: 312
4. 2012: 310
5. 2018: 294
Brady's touchdown pass to Fournette finished a drive that was created by Lavonte David's recovery of a Zach Pascal fumble, which was forced by safety Mike Edwards. The Buccaneers had five takeaways in the game, and the only one that didn't lead to points was the victory-sealing interception by Pierre Desir on the final play of the game.
Overall, the Buccaneers scored 24 points off takeaways, continuing a trend that started with the arrival of Defensive Coordinator Todd Bowles in 2019. Over the past three seasons combined, the Buccaneers have scored more points off takeaways than any team in the NFL.
Most Points Scored Off Takeaways, 2019-21
1. Tampa Bay: 325
2. Indianapolis: 256
3. Baltimore: 243
4. Pittsburgh: 236
5. New England: 235
Speaking of Lavonte David, he had seven tackles and a pass defensed to go with that fumble recovery late in the first quarter in what was the 146th start of his career. He broke a tie with Tony Mayberry for the fourth spot on the Buccaneers' all-time starts list, which means there are now only three players in team history who have started more games than Davis.
Most Games Started, Buccaneers History
David started his career in 2012 as a second-round draft pick out of Nebraska. Since then, he's been the NFL's most adept player in an unusual category: recoveries of opponent fumbles. He now has 17 of them, more than any other player in the NFL in that span.
Most Opponent Fumble Recoveries, NFL, 2012-14
Tampa Bay's second takeaway of the afternoon on Sunday was all the work of outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett, who swatted the ball out of Carson Wentz's hand on a third-quarter dropback and then circled back to grab the loose ball after several other players failed to secure it. That marks the 11th time since Barrett became a Buccaneer in 2019 that he has achieved the "strip-sack," forcing a fumble by the quarterback. No other player in the NFL can match Barrett's total in that category since 2019.
Most Strip-Sacks, NFL, 2019-21
That sack was the first of two on the afternoon for Barrett, who now leads the Buccaneers with 7.5 sacks in 2021. He has recorded 35.0acks since coming to Tampa in 2019, which is the third-most in the NFL in that span.
Most Sacks, NFL, 2019-21
Barrett also moved up two spots on the Buccaneers' all-time sacks list, breaking a tie with teammate Jason Pierre-Paul and leaping into sixth place.
Most Sacks, Buccaneers History
|Lee Roy Selmon||1976-84||78.5|
|Chidi Ahanotu||1993-2000; 04||34.5|