The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-7) headed into Week 16 riding a four game win streak. While the Buccaneers were eliminated from playoff contention the Houston Texans (9-5) could clinch the AFC South with a win. Tampa Bay as been plagued by late season injuries. Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, and Scotty Miller all out, Jameis Winston will be throwing to some new faces. The Texans are coming off a hard fought win against the Tennessee Titans. Tampa Bay’s defense will be tested today by Deshaun Watson and the Texans passing attack.
Another Bad start
Jameis Winston tied Peyton Manning for most interceptions on the first drive of a game with 6 in a season. To make matters even worse this time it was a pick six. Fans of the team are all too familiar with Winston’s struggles on the opening drive of the day but Winston stepped up his game and went two for two today. Yes, that’s correct he threw another interception on the second drive of the game. The defense held the Texans to a field goal and just like that the Buccaneers were in a 10-point hole.
Tampa Bay’s Defense
The Buccaneers’ defense really kept them in the game. All of Houston’s points in the first half came off of turnovers. After Winston’s two turnovers, Peyton Barber fumbled and Houston would go onto score on their next possession. Besides those three scores given up on short fields, the defense was all over the Texans.
Thanks to the defense keeping this game manageable, the Buccaneers were able to tie it before half time. The offense seemingly finding their rhythm late was able to sustain a few drives for scores. Ronald Jones scored cutting the Texans lead down to seven. Then Deshaun Watson would do his best Jameis Winston impression, throwing an air ball that was intercepted by the Tampa Bay defense. Winston and the offense were able to turn this late gift into seven points tying the game at 17.
After both teams traded field goals on their first possessions of the 2nd half, Houston took the lead with another field goal. Trailing by three, the Buccaneers were driving. A big stop on third and 1 brought up a huge fourth down play. After buying himself some time Winston threw to a wide open Cameron Brate who dropped an easy catch that led to a turnover on downs. Tampa Bay got the ball back for one more chance to tie the game but Winston threw his fourth interception of the day. That last turnover put the game out of reach for Tampa Bay who fall to 7-8 on the season. The Houston Texans clinched the AFC South and a playoff berth.
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