Bucs fortunate to be leading 9-7 over Texans
The Bucs got off to a slow start Sunday, but the Texans were just bad enough to let them hang around and lead 9-7 at halftime.
Here are some first half observations:
--The Bucs cornerbacks are having a bad day. Tampa Bay started Tim Jennings instead of Alterraun Verner. He gave up an easy slant pass to DeAndre Hopkins for a 5-yard touchdown. Verner finally got into the game after Johnthan Banks went down with a knee injury. CB Mike Jenkins also has been ineffective in coverage.
Texans QB Ryan Mallett is 14 of 23 for 134 yards with a TD and INT.
--The Bucs can’t run the football. Doug Martin has been bottled up by the Texans front seven. Martin has seven carries for 16 yards, but one of those runs was a 10-yard gain. This will be a problem in the second half.
--WR Mike Evans missed some big chances. He had a pass interference penalty on a long completion, he had a ball stripped from his hands on another deep shot and dropped a pass that would’ve been a first down at the Texans 33 yard line at the end of the half.
--The Bucs defensive line is not getting enough pressure on Mallett. DT Gerald McCoy is clearly limited by a bum shoulder but had a sack wiped away by a defensive holding penalty on D.J. Swearinger. The only sack was by Henry Melton.
--This could come down to the place-kickers. Bucs Kyle Brindza hit a 58-yard FG but missed a PAT. The Texans’ PK Randy Bullock missed a 43-yard FG.