Here are some thoughts on the Buccaneers’ amazing, 27-24 victory over the Steelers on Sunday.
For a change, there’s plenty to write about in the “good” department.
The Bucs got the ball back in Pittsburgh territory with less than a minute remaining, thanks to a defensive stop and a short punt. Mike Glennon had no timeouts to work with. No problem. He drove Tampa Bay right down the field with a huge 41-yard completion to Louis Murphy, followed by a 5-yard touchdown pass to Vincent Jackson with seven seconds left on the clock. It was an incredible rally by a team that gave up 56 points to the Falcons the last time out. Glennon threw for over 300 yards while completing just half of his passes. But with the game on the line, he came up big. Murphy finished with 99 yards receiving, as he stepped up in a big way after Mike Evans left the game with an injury.
Defensively, the Bucs limited the Steelers to just one touchdown in the second half. They sacked Ben Roethlisberger a season-high five times, and forced a fumble that led to Tampa Bay’s first score, a Glennon-to-Evans TD pass. We need to see more of that in the weeks to come.
Even with the sacks, the Buccaneers allowed Big Ben to throw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns. And they continue to struggle to cover tight ends. Heath Miller had 10 catches for 85 yards and a score. Next week, they’re playing a tight end named Jimmy Graham. I suggest they do some homework on him. Antonio Brown also had a field day, catching seven balls for 131 yards and two TD’s. And who knows what the outcome might have been had Brown not dropped a flea flicker that could’ve gone for another six points.
Penalties continue to be a problem. The Bucs were flagged nine times for 50 yards. But they were outdone by the Steelers in that category. Pittsburgh had 13 penalties, including more than a few 15-yarders that helped Tampa Bay’s cause.
The Bucs were down in the red zone on their second-to-last possession. They decided it would be a good idea to let Bobby Rainey throw a pass into the end zone. If that play works, you look like a genius. If it doesn’t, you look like a fool. It didn’t work. But fortunately, it didn’t end up costing Tampa Bay the game.