Before the season finale kickoff, we first checked in with Buccaneers.com Senior Writer Scott Smith for the Buccaneers inactives, while WDAE shared a key stat to watch for in the day’s game.
The Buccaneers would take the opening kickoff and it wouldn’t take long for Mike Evans to cross the 1,000-yard mark.
Play number two…
The Buccaneers would continue driving, crossing midfield on a third down conversion, again to Evans, but stall before the offense hit the 40-yard line, forcing a Buccaneers punt.
The Saints would start their drive from the seven-yard line. Strong defensive plays from Michael Johnson and Bradley McDougald helped force an opening three-and-out.
The Bucs took over at their 45-yard line, quickly driving into opponent territory.
The Buccaneers offense would take over at the 20-yard line, not before revealing some bad news for one of their stars.
From the seven-yard line, the Bucs would find the end zone on a strike from Josh McCown to Mike Evans in the back of the end zone, giving the Bucs a 10-0 lead!
The Saints would answer back on their next drive, plugging away with some nice gains up the field. The Bucs defense still made their presence felt.
The Bucs would begin at their 26-yard line and quickly make their way into Saints’ territory again starting with a seven-yard pass to Tavarres King and a nine-yard run by Charles Sims.
At the two-minute warning, the Bucs faced third-and-eight at the 18-yard line.
New Orleans took over with 1:48 to go in the half. Third-and-two play:
Buccaneers ball with 1:27 to go.
Patrick Murray would come in for his second field goal attempt of the day and give the Bucs a 20-7 lead going into halftime.
The Saints would get the opening possession of the first half, eventually taking it all the way to the Bucs’ 31-yard line, before another huge Buccaneers defensive play. Twitter was impressed.
The ensuing offensive drive for the Bucs would stall however due to a 10-yard holding penalty and the Bucs would punt it away. New Orleans took over at their own 45-yard line.
Inside the Bucs’ red zone, Brees looked for the end zone.
The Bucs would take over at the three-yard line after the turnover, but be forced to punt it back to the Saints who took over at their 46-yard line.
The Buccaneers offense couldn’t put together an answer on the next drive, but did receive a milestone from running back Doug Martin before punting it away.
Saints ball with 5:20 to go.
The Buccaneers would take over with 1:52 left, looking to get into field goal range before time expires. After a first down holding call backed them up to the 10-yard line, Josh McCown found Brandon Myers for five yards then was taken down by Cameron Jordan, backing the offense into third-and-21 at the six-yard line.
The Buccaneers would attempt an onside kick.
The Buccaneers covered the ball, but illegal touching was called, giving it to New Orleans. The play would go under review and be upheld. Saints ball on the 26-yard line and run the clock out.