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Falcons vs. Buccaneers Score Update: Atlanta leads 16-10 in close contest

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The Atlanta Falcons lead the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 16-10, but the Bucs have the ball on the Falcons' goal-line at the start of the fourth quarter.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons are fighting a close battle, with Atlanta up 16-10 but the Bucs threatening to score as the fourth quarter gets under way.

The Bucs could be fairly happy with the first half. There were plenty of mistakes, but at least they weren't getting blown out. Being down just 13-10 was a pretty good position to build on. The third quarter got off to more of the same, however: an iffy defensive effort that at least tightened up in field goal range. Matt Bryant kicked it through, and the Falcons took a 16-10 lead.

Meanwhile, the Bucs offense steadily drove down the field -- and then Josh McCown threw a near-pick, and Charles Sims dropped the ball after a couple of solid runs. The Falcons recovered and the Bucs were right back where they were. Thankfully, the defense actually held up and the Falcons couldn' capitalize -- and a 53-yard Marcus Thigpen punt return got the Bucs the ball in field goal range.

Can the Bucs close one out with a win, finally? Here's your fourth quarter open thread.