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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Rapid Reaction: Rams 27, Bucs 24

The Buccaneers fell on Monday night to the Los Angeles Rams, 27-24.


The Los Angeles Rams won the toss and elected to defer to the second half. It meant the Buccaneer offense would have the first chance of the night. The Bucs managed one first down before they surrendered the ball, punting back to the Rams with just over three minutes elapsed in the game.

The Rams were able to span the field on their first drive of the night and on third down and two inside the 10-yard line the Buccaneers got called for a neutral zone infraction. It set Los Angeles up with first-and-goal at the two-yard line. Safety Jordan Whitehead dropped running back Darrell Henderson for a loss of two on first down to make it a little harder but on third down quarterback Jared Goff connected with wide receiver Robert Woods for the four-yard score. It gave the Rams an early 7-0 lead after the successful point after by former Bucs kicker Matt Gay with 3:55 remaining in the first quarter.

Tampa Bay got going on their next drive in part thanks to a defensive pass interference called on Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey on wide receiver Mike Evans. Wide receiver Chris Godwin converted a crucial third down and then Brady subsequently hit tight end Rob Gronkowski for 16 yards to get the Bucs inside the red zone. The drive ended with a catch-and-muscle-his-way-through-multiple-defenders by Evans, who caught the ball from Brady at the eight-yard-line and managed to score. It tied the game at 7-7 with 14:10 left in the second quarter.

The Rams would come up empty on their next drive after a strong showing by the Bucs' defense. Inside linebacker Lavonte David dropped Woods for a loss of one on first down and Los Angeles wouldn't recover, going three and out and giving the ball back to the Bucs' offense.

The drive would prove fruitful for the Buccaneers, who were yet again helped by not just one but two defensive pass interference calls. The second was declined due to Evans making the catch anyway, because he's Mike Evans. He set the Bucs up at the two yard line with a fresh set of downs where running back Leonard Fournette took the ball into the end zone on a handoff from Brady. It gave the Bucs their first lead of the game with the good point after by kicker Ryan Succop, making the score 14-7 with 8:35 left in the second quarter.

Los Angeles answered with a touchdown of their own after they were helped within the red zone by a Bucs' penalty on third down. Goff connected with wide receiver Van Jefferson for the seven-yard score, tying the game at 14 apiece with 4:31 left in the half.

The Bucs wouldn't answer on their next drive, despite getting almost to midfield. After the punt, the Rams took back over at their own 19-yard line.

They'd get down the field in a hurry thanks to a 35-yard catch and run by Woods that set them up within field goal range. Goff spiked the ball with one second left on the clock and Gay was able to boot the 38-yarder to give Los Angeles a 17-14 lead going into halftime.

The Rams' first series of the second half would end abruptly as outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul got his second interception in as many games. It resulted in a 38-yard field goal by the Bucs this time to tie the game at 17-17 with 12:41 left in the third quarter.

Despite moving into Bucs' territory on their next drive, the Rams' offense would stall after defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh dropped running back Cam Akers for a loss of one on third down. Los Angeles settled for a 44-yard field goal attempt that Gay would miss, leaving the score tied at 17 all with 8:25 left in the third quarter.

It was the Bucs' turn to have a drive end abruptly as Brady was picked off by safety Jordan Fuller while under duress. The Rams took over at the Bucs' 37-yard line after a negative-11-yard return.

The Rams would capitalize as Goff connected with Akers for the four-yard touchdown. After the good point after, Los Angeles took a 24-17 lead with 5:39 left in the third quarter.

Tampa Bay went three-and-out on their next series, punting the ball back to the Rams after less than a minute with possession.

The Bucs' defense forced a Rams punt on the next series, getting it back to the Bucs' offense, albeit in less-than-ideal field position at their own 12-yard line after a good punt by Los Angeles. Tampa Bay wasn't able to do anything with it after Brady took a sack on second down that brought up third and 15. Brady was again under pressure on third down and the referees ruled it an incomplete pass. Head Coach Sean McVay challenged the call, thinking it was a fumble, instead. The call stood and the Bucs punted from their own eight-yard line as Los Angeles lost a timeout.

A penalty and pass breakup by David brought up third and 17 for the Rams on the next series. Pierre-Paul broke up the pass from Goff at the line and forced the Rams to punt with 13:35 left to go in the game.

The Bucs took over at their own 20-yard line and the first play of the series was a nine-yard completion to Gronkowski. They ran the ball the next play to get the first down but it would be their only of the drive. Third down saw a bizarre play where Brady's pass was batted back to him and he threw it again, completing it to Evans. He was hit with an illegal forward pass penalty but the Rams declined it, which allowed the gain. It brought up fourth and two and the Bucs would punt.

The Rams wouldn't get anywhere behind a big tackle for loss by cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting on first down. Los Angeles was faced with a third-and-15 that they would not convert, punting the ball away back to the Bucs' offense.

Tampa Bay took over at their own 37-yard line but wouldn't get further than the Rams' 43-yard line. Faced with fourth-down and one, the Bucs went for it but the ball from Brady to Godwin fell incomplete and the Bucs turned it over on downs.

The first play of the next drive was a fumble that was recovered by Goff but resulted in a loss of one. The next play, the Rams were hit with a delay of game penalty that backed them up to second and 16. On the next throw, Goff was intercepted by safety Jordan Whitehead, who returned it to the Los Angeles 44-yard line with just under seven minutes to play in the game.

The Buccaneers would capitalize this time, driving down the field and into the red zone. Brady would hit Godwin for a 13-yard grown-man-score as Godwin leaped over the defender to cross the plane into the end zone. It tied the game at 24-24 with 3:53 to go in the game.

Los Angeles got down the field and just outside the red zone, electing to continue running the ball. They'd eventually end up with a fourth-and-eight situation and brought on Gay to kick the field goal with 2:40 left in the game. He made the 40-yard field goal to give the Rams the lead back, 27-24.

The Bucs had 2:36 left in the game to score. Center A.Q. Shipley got shaken up on the drive, which shuffled the Bucs' offensive line, moving Ryan Jensen back to center and subbing in Aaron Stinnie at guard. The drive would end very uncharacteristically for Brady as he was picked off for the second time, again by Fuller, just inside the two-minute warning.

The Rams were faced with a third-down and seven as the Bucs burned their timeouts. Goff handed the ball off and Los Angeles wouldn't convert, running the clock down to nine seconds left. The punt ran the clock all the way out as the Bucs fell, 27-24, on Monday Night Football.

View photos of Tampa Bay's Week 11 matchup against Los Angeles.

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