Tampa had a comfortable lead and then a kickoff for a touchdown and a series of penalties killed them. Some of these things were 'rookie mistakes'; just young players having an age appropriate lack of awareness. Others were stalwarts of the defense just not making good decisions or plays.
Quincy Black's horse collar forced me into convulsions. I was unsure if it was a legitimate horse tackle- had his hand wrapped around the pads or just the jersey- but I was admittedly too sick to look at the replays. Similarly, with Ronde Barber's pass interference, it looked to me like Gonzalez cut into him and Ronde reacted to it.
Josh Freeman's penalty was a mixture of youth and frustration, and it didn't make a difference in the outcome of the game. Other than that it was as though every time a whistle blew a flag was on the ground. The fourth quarter was sickening to watch.
During the first half the Tampa defense was frustrating the Falcon offense. Ryan wasn't sacked however he certainly wasn't comfortable. Aqib Talib, Ronde Barber, and Geno Hayes all missed interceptions. They're listed from egregious to forgivable respectively. Talib was hit square in the chest and Barber read the play and got slapped in the hands but neither could hang on. Hayes was almost parallel to the ground and is in his first year as a starter, so I'll jjust let that one go.
As frustrating as it was to watch Tampa lose today, I've come away with a better feeling about the team. Never did they have the game in hand during these two teams last meeting. Apart from some sloppy play there isn't too much to complain about- the run defense continued to look better and Ryan was still picked off twice while the O put up 24 points. Tampa's got to win next week, and they've got a great shot considering the Redskins are looking terrible.