As always, we begin with Buccaneers.com Senior Writer and Editor Scott Smith sharing the Bucs inactive report, this time with a few significant names missing the game due to injury.
The Buccaneers won the toss and deferred, giving Cincinnati the first possession of the game, and the drive started out with a bang.
A bad snap on third down led to a Josh McCown sack, but the Buccaneers still struck first, putting up three points off the Banks interception.
After two very strong games in Washington and Chicago, the Buccaneers defense continued their dominant play on the Bengals' second possession. Tampa Bay Times' Greg Auman calls the plays.
The Tampa Bay offense took the field again, notching two first downs on good plays from Doug Martin, Vincent Jackson and Mike Evans.
Ultimately, the Buccaneers would be forced to punt it back to the Bengals, but great special teams coverage pinned the Bengals at their own one-yard line.
Quick strikes from the Bengals moved them away from the goal line, but the defense did their job and forced another Bengals punt.
The Bucs offense took advantage of the defense's strong performance with a long drive ending in more points for Tampa Bay. We'll hand it over to Twitter for the highlights:
The Bucs would be forced to punt it back to the Bengals, who took over at the 36-yard line with just over five minutes to play. They would end their drive with their first points of the day.
The Bucs took over at the 22-yard line with 1:03 left on the clock and two timeouts. But the drive would end early with a Josh McCown interception, giving the Bengals one more second-quarter chance.
The Bucs defense however quickly shut things down, forcing their third turnover of the half, ensuring that the Bengals would not add to their total before the break.
I told you guys from the start. This is bad Andy Dalton we're seeing in Tampa now. Jacquies Smith with the pressure, Dalton just threw it up — Rick Brown (@LedgeronBucs) November 30, 2014
The Bucs started the third quarter with the ball, but would be forced to punt it away. The Bengals took over for their first drive of the half at the 43-yard line.
A good punt would pin the Bucs offense back at their own two-yard line, and they'd be forced to punt it back to the Bengals. Despite solid plays from Da'Quan Bowers and Danny Lansanah, Cincinnati was able to convert on two long third-down attempts and ended the drive with a 14-10 lead.
The Bucs took over possession with far better field position than usual.
A personal foul by the Bengals would move the ball to closer, but clipping and a false start would spoil the drive. A 42-yard Patrick Murray field goal cut the lead to one.
The teams would trade punts with Cincinnati taking over at their own 24-yard line. The Bucs defense again took a stand to get the offense back on the field.
The Buccaneers offense took the field with 8:23 to go.
The drive would eventually stall out and end in a Buccaneers punt. Holding a one-point lead, the Bengals offense took over.
Four plays later, however, the Buccaneers defense would stand firm again, and give the offense one more shot.
The Bucs would begin their two minute drill.
First down at Buccaneers 31-yard line.
First down at the 41-yard line.
The play went under review.
Two incomplete passes made it fourth-and-long from outside of field goal range. McCown completed the pass to Mike Evans for 13 yards, but shy of the first down marker.