Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Three plays from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Philadelphia Eagles game worth another look

Final chance

. On the final play of the first half, the Bucs had a chance not only to reward themselves for a quick march down the field — 68 yards in 1:20 to the Eagles 8 — but cut into a 21-7 deficit.

With six seconds remaining and a timeout to spare, Josh Johnson dropped back to pass, looking for a quick route that would preserve enough time for a field goal, if necessary. They never got the chance.

Johnson, under heavy pressure, tried to hit WR Sammie Stroughter with a bullet pass. But the ball deflected off of his hands and into the waiting arms of CB Asante Samuel.

"It was another situation where they brought everybody (on a blitz)," Johnson said. "I knew with the routes we had, it would have to be quick. I knew Sammie wouldn't be out of his route. I knew even if I worked the other side (of the field), it would probably be the same situation.

"I threw it in a spot where I knew Sammie was going to be. And I put a little bit too much pepper on it, and it ricocheted right into Asante Samuel's hands. It was a gift to him. It was another frustrating play."

The fumbled snap

. With the Bucs very much still in the game, trailing 7-0 with 7:36 left in the second quarter, Tampa Bay decided to go for it on fourth and inches from the Eagles 23. What transpired was a worst-case scenario — well, almost.

QB Josh Johnson fumbled the snap, and a scramble ensued. LB Akeem Jordan wrestled the ball away from Johnson and raced 72 yards to the end zone. The Bucs challenged the outcome of the play, and referee Terry McAulay ruled Johnson regained possession, had a knee on the ground and was touched by DE Juqua Parker before the ball came loose. Unfortunately for the Bucs , that still meant they didn't pick up the first down. So the Eagles took possession anyway.

"I can't even remember what happened," Johnson said. "I felt like I did the same thing I had been doing. … It happened so fast. It was unacceptable on my part. Even if (the snap) was short, I've got to do my best to get the ball. That's what it all boils down to. That's what the frustration is about. It's not about when a team physically beats you. It's about when you do a lot of things that hurt yourself. That's the most frustrating part about it."

The play perhaps, swung momentum. Had the Bucs converted the first down, they would have been in a position to score. Instead, the Eagles scored a touchdown six plays later to go up 14-0, and they never looked back.



Another toasting — twice

. With Kevin Curtis out with an inflamed left knee, WR Jeremy Maclin started. And he made the most of the opportunity. The rookie out of Missouri caught two long touchdowns, including a 51-yarder on the Eagles' second play from scrimmage. Matched against Elbert Mack in one-on-one press coverage, it appeared Mack failed to reroute Maclin, and he ran past the cornerback. A perfectly thrown ball from Donovan McNabb made it a relatively easy play.

Asked about the margin for error in that coverage, Mack said, "It's very slim. Very, very slim. … I just got beat."

Maclin struck again in the second quarter when he got behind S Will Allen down the middle of the field for a 40-yarder. The Bucs were playing Cover 4 on the play, meaning each defensive back covers one-fourth of the field. Allen had one of the two middle zones but, when trailing Maclin, never turned to make a play on a ball that appeared within his reach. Maclin caught it in stride and scored. The Bucs had three safeties in on the play, including Tanard Jackson as the nickel back slot.

Three plays from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Philadelphia Eagles game worth another look 10/11/09 [Last modified: Sunday, October 11, 2009 9:38pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Longest home run at Trop and Erasmo Ramirez's pitching doom Rays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Kevin Kiermaier returned. The problem was, so did Erasmo Ramirez.

    Seattle Mariners first baseman Yonder Alonso (10) scores on the double by Seattle Mariners designated hitter Nelson Cruz (23) in the first inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 18, 2017.
  2. Rays journal: Kevin Kiermaier returns, Mallex Smith sent to Triple A

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It didn't take CF Kevin Kiermaier long to make his presence felt during his return Friday to the Rays lineup. Kiermaier pretended to have Mariners DH Nelson Cruz's first-inning line drive lined up even as the ball went past him to his right and to the wall.

    Tampa Bay Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (39) flies out in the first inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 18, 2017.
  3. Rays vs. Mariners, 6:10 p.m. Saturday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Mariners

    6:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    This is a 2017 photo of Jake Odorizzi of the Tampa Bay Rays baseball team. This image reflects the 2017 active roster as of Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017 when this image was taken. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
  4. Bucs journal: Starting defense disappointed holding Jags to 1 rushing yard

    Bucs

    JACKSONVILLE — The Bucs' starting defense held the Jaguars to a total of 1 rushing yard on seven carries in the first half of Thursday's 12-8 preseason win.

    And its members were disappointed.

    Jacksonville Jaguars running back T.J. Yeldon (24) is thrown for a 1-yard loss as he is stopped by Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David (54) and defensive end Robert Ayers (91) during the first half of an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux) JVS102
  5. Jameis Winston's hardest lesson: He can't always save the day

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Ever wonder what in the world goes through Jameis Winston's mind when he tries to fit the ball in a keyhole as he is being dragged to the turf like he was during Thursday night's 12-8 preseason win over the Jaguars?

    Jameis Winston, left, tries to hang on to the ball as Jaguars defensive end Dante Fowler tries to strip it from him.