3rd and 19 yards to go in the fourth quarter, behind by 3 points, Winston can choose for the safe route and look for a few more yards to get into field goal range or look for the big play to get a first down with a possibility to score a touchdown. Winston, miraculously, did both. He ran up the middle for about a 10 yard gain and was temporarily stopped. Everyone stopped, but Winston. Winston, on top of the pile of players and whose knees never touched the ground, pulled himself away and boomeranged himself around in a wide arc to weave toward a first down. Eventually, that play lead to a game winning touchdown.
Should the Bucs run the table and make the playoffs, then we all can look back at this play. The will of Winston on that play maybe the one play that may not only propel him into a new light in the NFL, but the Buccaneers as well.
Atlanta's Basic stats before the game
Defensive Passing: 15th (241 yards/game)
Defensive Rushing: 10th (96 yards/game)
Points Against: 13th (21.2 ppg)
Tampa Bay's Basic stats before the game
Offensive Passing: 24th (227 yards/game)
Offensive Rushing: 3rd (141 yards/game)
Points For: 18th (22.5 ppg)
Here is what transpired in the game for the offense:
|TB Offense vs Atl Defense|
|Tampa Bay||Atl||TB - Opp Differential||Differential %|
|Game Stat||Pre-Game Stat|
The offense stayed true to its form of being a run first offense.
|TB Offense vs Atl Defense|
|Qtr||Drive||Plays||Yards||Result||RZ||Pts||40 + yard Drives||50 + yard Drives||60 + yard Drives||70 + Yard Drives||80 + Yard Drives||Totals|
The offense finally woke up in the second half and scored 16 points for the win. Also, it went 3 for 4 in the Red zone, a game won by 4 points. A miracle was needed by QB Winston scrambling for a first down on 3rd and 19; a play that may have cemented the team's faith in Winston leading them. Although Winston made a miraculous play, I may be the only person who thinks that Winston missed Doug Martin in the flat with a wide open field and blockers at the sticks.
Second Half Production
Second half scoring is important to give your team a chance to win or to hold onto a win. Last week, the Bucs' offense was held off the score sheet in the second half. It is only the second time the Bucs' offense has been shut out for scoring in the second half.
|Points Allowed Breakdown, 2015|
|Game||Team||1st||2nd||Total at 1st Half||3rd||4th||Total at 2nd Half||Total|
I did not realize that the Bucs' offense has been slow to the scoring sheet in the first half in the recent games, with the exception of the Philly game. That needs to be addressed sooner than later if the Bucs want to close out the final quarter of the season perfect. Start fast offensively and do not let up.
On a rare occasion, the Bucs won the game despite losing the turnover battle. At the end of the first half, Mike Evans had the ball thrown a bit high and off of his hands. The ball popped up into the air for an interception. I have originally thought that Winston was at fault for throwing the ball too high, but in Evans' weekly Total Access audio interview every Thursday, Mike said the interception was all his fault. Mike had lined up too far inside of where he was supposed to be. In reflection, that does make sense as the offense would try to preserve timeouts by having the wide receivers catch the ball near the side lines. That turnover cost the Bucs 3 points at the end of the half.
The second turnover was RB Doug Martin's fumble. That turnover cost the Bucs 7 points, for a total of 10 points given up due to turnovers. Does Martin have a fumble problem?
|Top Rushers based on Yards|
|2015 (week 13, and Week 14 Thur Game - Min)|
The answer is: No, Doug Martin does not have a fumble problem in respect to the top rushers in the league.
Despite the penalties and turnovers, the offense was still able to overcome such setbacks. Of course, without the defensive assist, the win would not come to fruition. The offense does still need to get a fast start and pile on points in the first half as well as stay true to its identity - establish the strong run game with the second best rusher in the league.