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Buccaneers down just 17-10 to Panthers at half despite three turnovers

Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are down 17-10 at the half against the Carolina Panthers.

The Bucs had a terrible start to the game. So much so that this tweet seemed to basically sum up the game until midway through the second quarter.

Jameis Winston and company kept putting the defense in terrible situations. The Bucs turned the ball over three times in the first half, once on a fumbled, once on a terrible pick six on a quick out, and once on a tipped pass turned into an interception. All 17 points the Panthers scored came off those turnovers. Of course, the defense wasn't exactly blameless. They did allow the Panthers to drive down the field and get the touchdown after that third turnover, in large part because Mike Jenkins keeps getting on the field at cornerback for some unfathomable reason.

Despite that horrible start to the game, the Bucs are still in it and they had a chance to tie the game just before the half. Instead of taking a shot at the endzone, though, they played to turn a 36-yard field goal into a 29-yarder -- which Kyle Brindza then missed, likely signing his death warrant.

Part of the issue was the Bucs' inability to consistently run the ball. Despite a few decent runs, Doug Martin averaged just 2.8 yards per carry in the first half, though he did add a touchdown to cap a scrappy drive in the second quarter. Meanwhile, Winston couldn't find anyone deep. Josh Norman seemed to have Mike Evans locked down, while even with a lot of Panthers blitzes no one seemed to come open for Winston.