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Buccaneers-Rams Day After Reactions

Historic offensive output leads to Buccaneers victory over Rams.

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Los Angeles Rams Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

What a Sunday it was for the Buccaneers as they came away with a victory to start a flurry of tough away games. Traveling across the country to Los Angeles was going to be tough enough as is without the fact that it was to face the defending NFC Champion Rams, but that didn’t matter this time around. The Buccaneers set a franchise record with 55 points in a shootout for the ages for Bucs fans. Let’s dive into some quick reactions.


How about the offensive line for Tampa Bay in this one? Facing Aaron Donald and company and coming away having allowed only two sacks while the offense itself put up 55 points is just crazy. Hats off to the big guys up front for holding their own against a top tier defensive unit.

The receivers were eating good against the Rams secondary as Chris Godwin and Mike Evans both had some huge plays in this one. Godwin had a monster performance hauling in 12 of 14 targets for 172 yards including a 30 yarder and a touchdown. Jameis found Evans late for a massive blow on a 67 yard touchdown pass while Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard combined for 6 receptions and 60+ yards to go with Brates touchdown reception.

The running game wasn’t as dynamic as we’ve seen at times but one thing was clear, Ronald Jones is looking more and more like RB1 and the touches suggested just that in this ball game. Jones rushed 19 times for 70 yards with a big play of 24 to go along with his one reception for 12 yards. Barber didnt’ haul in his only target and saw himself carrying the ball only 9 times for 19 yards. Both backs found pay dirt in this one in what may be the final turning point to Jones getting the lions share of the touches.

How about Jameis Winston? Jameis saw himself taking some critical hits from fans/media last week after a late interception and he did have a pick 6 in this one but other than that Jameis flat out balled in this game. Jameis is on a three game stretch now where he’s really slinging it good and looking confident in himself. How can he not be? Winston hit the deep ball, had success all over the field and for once was given adequate time to throw on a relatively consistent basis. Jameis capped the day with 4 touchdowns and 385 yards thru the air. Tremendous performance behind center.


We’ll start with the bad and end on a good note when it comes to the defense. Let’s face it, this defense gave up 30+ points (offense gave up a pick 6 remember) and things can’t continue down this path if there’s any hope of [audible laughs]... playoffs.

The defensive backs are continuing to struggle and in this game it was once again M.J. Stewart who was targeted repeatedly. Robert Woods took Stewart and a couple others to the woodshed in this one and if not for the Tampa Bay offense and some late heroics from the unstoppable force up front, Stewart would be getting a lot of flack for how this game went on defense. Jordan Whitehead did have himself another good ball game which is really becoming a weekly expectation at this point as the young safety continues to improve. Whitehead had an interception in this one.

In the middle it was all Lavonte David and Kevin Minter with the ladder having a crucial late penalty that extended a drive thanks to a roughing the passer call. Lavonte had himself an interception in this ball game and was playing with a ton of emotion and intensity in the fourth quarter.

Up front is where it was at once again. The Rams only ran the ball 10 times for 30 yards, of course two of those 10 went for touchdowns but none the less, the run defense was pretty stout. Pressure wasn’t easy to come by with the Rams offensive playcalling and design but William Gholston managed to make it home on a sack and the one man wrecking crew otherwise known as Shaquil Barrett had a monster exclamation point on the game with a beautiful spin move turned into a strip sack. Suh in turn scooped it up and sped off to the endzone for the defensive touchdown. One can’t ignore the earlier interception Barrett had to cap off yet another impressive game for the first year Buccaneer.

Special Teams

Speaking of big games, how about rookie kicker Matt Gay? Things were about as bad as they could get after last weeks issues kicking but Gay came out swinging that leg and had himself a great bounce back game. A late penalty allowed for a re-kick on a missed extra point and he booted it thru to finish the day a perfect 9-9 on kick attempts.

Final Reactions

This is the type of offensive explosion that this team needed. With Bruce Arians being brought in and all the money seemingly spent on offense, the offense needed to be the ones doing the heavy lifting and they did just that. If the defense can get some key takeaways like they did against the Rams and the offense can turn them into points, there’s no reason this team shouldn’t be playing meaningful games late in the season.