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In honor of Mike Evans’ milestone, we recall his most memorable touchdowns

The veteran receiver on Sunday tied Mike Alstott’s franchise record of 71 career touchdowns.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) turned this short Tom Brady throw into a memorable 9-yard touchdown during a Monday Night Football game against the Rams in 2020.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) turned this short Tom Brady throw into a memorable 9-yard touchdown during a Monday Night Football game against the Rams in 2020. [ DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times ]
Published Nov. 16, 2021

Even as the Bucs stymied themselves with picks, penalties and porous third-down defense Sunday afternoon, Mike Evans reached a milestone some presumed was unattainable.

With his 40-yard scoring reception in the fourth quarter, the eighth-year receiver tied Mike Alstott’s franchise record for total touchdowns (71). Evans now has 70 TD catches; the other score came in 2018, when Jameis Winston coughed up the ball in the Giants end zone and Evans snagged it from a defender for six unlikely points.

While Evans barely commented on the feat in the game’s immediate wake (“I was excited because it got us back in the game,” he said), we couldn’t let such an achievement go unnoticed.

We sifted through the 71 TDs and ranked the five most memorable of his career (listed in chronological order). Our criteria included clutch factor, difficulty of the play and historical significance. Because this is a regular season record, Evans’ two postseason TDs weren’t considered.

Making his mark

Nov. 16, 2014

Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) pulls in a 56-yard touchdown pass as Washington inside linebacker Perry Riley (56) pursues during the second half of Tampa Bay's 27-7 romp on Nov. 16, 2014 in Landover, Md.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) pulls in a 56-yard touchdown pass as Washington inside linebacker Perry Riley (56) pursues during the second half of Tampa Bay's 27-7 romp on Nov. 16, 2014 in Landover, Md. [ ALEX BRANDON | AP ]

Though Evans had posted 100-yard receiving efforts in each of his previous two games, this one still ranks as his breakthrough game as a pro. Evans finished with seven receptions for 209 yards and two touchdowns, becoming the first rookie to collect 200 yards and a pair of TDs in a game since Anquan Boldin 11 years earlier. The highlight: a 56-yard TD catch from Josh McCown, who beat a blitz to find his 6-foot-5 target in single coverage against a linebacker.

Shining on a national stage

Nov. 3, 2016

Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) hauls in a 24-yard touchdown pass from Jameis Winston during the second quarter of a 2016 Thursday night game against the Falcons at Raymond James Stadium. Atlanta prevailed, 43-28, but Evans had 11 catches for 150 yards.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) hauls in a 24-yard touchdown pass from Jameis Winston during the second quarter of a 2016 Thursday night game against the Falcons at Raymond James Stadium. Atlanta prevailed, 43-28, but Evans had 11 catches for 150 yards. [ ELLIOTT, LOREN | Tampa Bay Times ]

Before a Thursday night NBC audience, Evans delivered a clinic in a 43-28 defeat. Targeted 17 times, he finished with 11 catches for 150 yards and two TDs, the latter of which remains a staple in his highlight reel. On second and long from the Falcons 24, Winston found Evans near the left edge of the end zone, where he snagged the ball over cornerback Robert Alford, then maintained possession by securing it atop his helmet.

See the YouTube clip here

A bomb to beat Lattimore

Sept. 9, 2018

Mike Evans got the better of Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore when it really mattered in this 2018 game.
Mike Evans got the better of Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore when it really mattered in this 2018 game. [ BUTCH DILL | Associated Press ]
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While Evans’ annual duels with Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore occasionally have gone over the edge, this play went right over the top. In one of the Bucs’ most exhilarating season openers, Evans beat Lattimore to haul in a 50-yard bomb from Ryan Fitzpatrick (who replaced the suspended Winston) to highlight a 48-40 road win against the Saints.

See the YouTube clip here

Earning every yard

Nov. 23, 2020

Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) drags Rams cornerback Troy Hill (22) as he fights to get across the goal line on a 9-yard scoring pass from Tom Brady in a 2020 Monday Night Football game at Raymond James Stadium. The Rams won, 27-24.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) drags Rams cornerback Troy Hill (22) as he fights to get across the goal line on a 9-yard scoring pass from Tom Brady in a 2020 Monday Night Football game at Raymond James Stadium. The Rams won, 27-24. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]

While this catch lacked dramatic or historical appeal, it typified the desire, resilience and freaky athleticism that has endeared Evans to his fan base. On third and 1 from the Rams 9 in last year’s Monday night clash, Evans caught a short Brady throw near the line of scrimmage, where he was met by cornerback Troy Hill. Evans spun away from Hill, who still held on to the receiver’s right leg. From there, Evans dragged Hill into the end zone for a 9-yard TD in the Bucs’ 27-24 loss.

See the YouTube clip here

The greatest giveaway

Oct. 24, 2021

Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrates his touchdown (and quarterback Tom Brady’s 600th career TD pass) by giving the ball to Byron "Bo" Kennedy (who eventually gave it back) during the first quarter of an Oct. 24 game against the Bears at Raymond James Stadium.
Bucs receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrates his touchdown (and quarterback Tom Brady’s 600th career TD pass) by giving the ball to Byron "Bo" Kennedy (who eventually gave it back) during the first quarter of an Oct. 24 game against the Bears at Raymond James Stadium. [ DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times ]

Evans, who in recent years has given many of his TD balls to fans, may never live down this act of benevolence against the Bears. Early in the Bucs’ 38-3 romp last month, he snagged a 9-yard scoring pass from Tom Brady near the goal line, then handed it to a fan bedecked in an old-school No. 13 jersey who was standing in the north end zone’s front row. Unbeknownst to Evans, it was Brady’s 600th career TD pass. You know the rest.

See the YouTube clip here

Contact Joey Knight at jknight@tampabay.com. Follow @TBTimes_Bulls

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