Tampa Bay Buccaneers

This Day in Bucs History, Aug. 31

Exactly 18 years ago, the Buccaneers began one of the most thrilling seasons in franchise history with a 13-6 upset of the 49ers, kicking off a five-game winning streak.

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Throughout the 2015 season, Buccaneers.com will present "This Day in Buccaneers History," highlighting some of the most memorable moments during four decades of franchise existence. These trips down Memory Lane are presented by Bucpower.com and its long-time editor, Paul Stewart, founder of the robust team fan club Bucs UK. *Bucpower.com features an extensive database of information on Buccaneer players, games and seasons, dating back to the inaugural 1976 campaign.*

August 31, 1997: Tampa Bay defeats San Francisco, 13-6

The only time the Buccaneers have ever played a competitive match in August but it more importantly marked the first official appearance of the pewter colours in a regular season game.  The Bucs had ended Tony Dungy's first season in 1996 posting a 5-2 mark in their final seven games and expectations were high in spite of the mighty San Francisco 49ers being the opponents.

The visitors held a 6-0 lead at half-time on a pair of K Gary Anderson field goals but the young Buc defense was in mighty form becoming the first team to hold the 49ers without a touchdown in almost six seasons.   Both QB Steve Young and WR Jerry Rice left the game through injury and although the former Tampa Bay QB returned later on, the 49ers never seriously threatened in the second half. 

K Michael Husted brought the Bucs close on a 40-yard field goal late in the third quarter and then QB Trent Dilfer's one-yard TD pass to TE Dave Moore put the home side ahead for good.  Another Husted field goal midway through the fourth quarter was the icing on the cake as Pewter Power was unleashed upon the rest of the NFL.

Statistical highlights from the game:

  • Rushing: Alstott 14-69, Dunn 8-37, Dilfer 4-8, Hape 1-1.
  • Passing: Dilfer 26-14-165-1-1.
  • Receiving: Williams 3-74, Alstott 3-50, Thomas 2-9, Moore 2-6, Dunn 2-4, Harris 1-15, Anthony 1-7.

For more information on this game: www.bucpower.com/1997game1.html

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