Cleat Geeks

Bucs Win in Overtime

photo from ftw.usatoday.com

What a difference a week makes. After being embarrassed 2 weeks ago defensively by the Atlanta Falcons, the Tampa Bay defense breaks a three game losing streak and came up big in a 26-23 win in overtime against the Cleveland Browns. Tampa Bay’s defense behind new defensive coordinator Mark Duffner looked faster, more aggressive, and played with a spark that I have not seen all year. The defense had 5 sacks, including 2 by former Cleveland Browns player Carl Nassib, which was a season high and forced two key three-and-outs in the overtime win. The defense also allowed the Browns to only convert 3-14 on third downs throughout the game. Tampa did this defensively without a majority of their stars including Gerald McCoy, Vinny Curry, Vernon Hargreaves (IR), and linebacker Kwon Alexander who was injured in the game.

Surprisingly, the Tampa Bay defense bailed out the offense which had 4 turnovers in the game. Jameis Winston accounted for two of the turnovers with 2 interceptions including a costly interception in overtime giving Cleveland the ball in Buccaneer territory. However, Tampa was able to prevail in the end behind a game winning 59 yard field goal by kicker Chandler Catanzaro. Tampa now improves to 3-3 on the season and has momentum going into their week 8 match-up against the Cincinnati Bengals who were just embarrassed on Sunday Night Football against the Kansas City Chiefs in a 45-10 loss.

The Tampa Bay defense will be put to the test again against the Bengals. Cincinnati currently ranks 11th in points per game with 26.3. Tampa will go into the game without a major piece of the defense. Linebacker Kwon Alexander will miss the remainder of the 2018 season with a Torn ACL.  Adarius Taylor will replace Kwon Alexander at linebacker. Taylor is a 5 year player and has been with Tampa the last 4 years in a reserve role. Tampa may be without starting running back Peyton Barber who exited early due to an injury. Rookie running back Ronald Jones came into replace Barber and scored Tampa’s first rushing touchdown of the season by a running back.  If Barber is unable to play Sunday, look for an increased role for Ronald Jones with Jacquizz Rodgers also gaining extra snaps. Jones needs to show Buccaneer fans why Tampa believed he was worth a second round pick as he has been a healthy inactive for much of the 2018 season. Jones will have a great opportunity to show that as the Bengals rush defense currently ranks 28th allowing 128.7 yards per game on the ground. Overall, the Bengal defense ranks 31st in the league in yards allowed so Tampa’s offense should be able to move the ball effectively and efficiently. I expect an offensive showdown Sunday and hopefully another Tampa Bay victory. FIRE THEM CANNONS!

 

Meet The Bucs

photo from buccaneers.com

 

This week’s player in Meet the Bucs made a key play in the Tampa Bay win Sunday vs Cleveland. Anthony Auclair is the Tampa Bay Bucs third string tight end which also makes him a special team’s player. Auclair forced a fumble on Browns punt returner Jabrill Peppers which setup the game winning field goal kick by Tampa Bay.  Auclair was an undrafted free agent signing in 2017.  Auclair is a massive individual standing 6’6 and weighing 270 lbs.  He attended college at Laval University which is a Canadian College. Auclair hasn’t contributed too much offensively but as noted from earlier in the article he proves to be a valuable special team contributor for Tampa Bay.

Mychal Warno

Follow me on Twitter @dynastydadmike for all things Tampa Bay and fantasy football advice. Also please follow @cleatgeeks for all things football.

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