Clayborn shining for Falcons as Bucs come to town

Former Bucs first-round pick has had a nice two weeks, with six-sack game, then a touchdown in Monday's win.
Published Nov. 21, 2017|Updated Nov. 21, 2017

The Bucs face the Falcons twice in their final six games, and as they prepare to go to Atlanta on Sunday, former Tampa Bay first-round pick Adrian Clayborn has had a nice two-week run.

Clayborn had a huge game nine days ago with six sacks in a win against the Cowboys, taking advantage of a backup tackle to match the second-most sacks in any game in NFL history. Then on Monday night, he was again making headlines, scooping up a loose ball after a sack and returning it 10 yards for a touchdown in the win against Seattle.

"I was just around the ball," Clayborn told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "I picked it up and scored. There wasn't (anything) special that I did … I was just lucky to be in the right spot at the right time."

The Bucs let Clayborn go after four seasons, two of them limited to a combined four games by injuries. The recent surge of sacks and the touchdown are still largely outliers for Clayborn –before his Dallas breakout, he had 9.5 total sacks in 37 games with Atlanta, and the score was just his second in 76 career games.

"Coming to Altanta has really allowed him to be able to express himself and become that guy that he wants to become," Falcons assistant Raheem Morris, who was his head coach with the Bucs, told the AJC. "This year has really worked out well for him."

Tampa Bay will have to account for the Falcons' pass rush on Sunday — they have 29 sacks, tied for fourth-most in the NFL and nearly double the Bucs' 15 this season.