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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Game Awards: Bucs vs. Redskins


Game Ball* Take a wild guess. Evans' 51-yard catch in the second quarter got the Bucs out of a second-and-20 hole and set up the Patrick Murray field goal that made it 13-0. The rookie wideout had two catches for 69 yards at halftime but was just getting started. In the third quarter, Evans caught four passes for 104 yards on an 80-yard touchdown drive, including the 36-yard completion that capped. On the Bucs' next drive, he beat LB Perry Riley deep and scored on a 56-yard pass from Josh McCown. By game's end, Evans had 209 yards, the third-highest total in franchise history and the most ever by a rookie. Washington simply had no answer for the 6-5 playmaker.*

Play of the Game** It could easily be any one of Evans long receptions, but in this case the play that got the Bucs started towards victory occurred on defense. Holding onto a 3-0 lead late in the first quarter, Tampa Bay was trying to stop a third-down play deep in Washington territory. QB Robert Griffin III threw a sharp pass to WR Pierre Garcon, who was open running a slant. However, LB Mason Foster leaped to get a hand on the ball and CB Johnthan Banks hauled in the deflection. Banks raced to the corner of the end zone, paused to absorb a hit from a Washington lineman and then spun and dived at the pylon for the touchdown. The Bucs went up 10-0 and would never trail.Turning Point The Bucs seemed to dominate the first half thanks to their three takeaways and appeared to be heading to halftime with a 13-0 lead. Unfortunately, the Redskins drove the length of the field for a touchdown just before the intermission and appeared to have grabbed the momentum. After the Bucs' offense punted to start the second half, Washington drove down to the Bucs' 26 and was threatening to completely erase Tampa Bay's lead. Instead, DE Michael Johnson collapsed the pocket on Griffin on third-and-two and the Redskins had to settle for a 50-yard field goal, which K Kai Forbath missed. Tampa Bay would then score on its next two drives to put the game away.It Was Over When
The Redskins blitzed McCown on second-and-16 near midfield and the Buccaneers made them pay. Tampa Bay's offensive line picked up the blitz – in his postgame press conference, Washington Head Coach Jay Gruden said his defense failed to send a free runner through the A-Gap – and McCown had extra time to see Evans sprinting downfield with Riley in pursuit and no safety over the top. It was an easy decision and a perfect throw, and that 56-yard TD put the game away.

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