The Tampa Bay Buccaneers played their most complete game of the season on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium. They won the turnover battle for the first time since week one against the New Orleans Saints and the defense allowed only nine points. Jason Pierre-Paul reached double digit sacks for the season and became the first player since Simeon Rice in 2005. Jameis Winston connected with eight different receivers in the victory and Mike Evans reached 1,000 receiving yards this season for the fifth consecutive year. He became the third receiver in NFL history to reach 1,000 receiving yards in his first five career seasons as he tied A.J. Green and now only trails Randy Moss who did it in his first six seasons.
The first touchdown came on the third drive of the game, after a punt from both teams. Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback, Jameis Winston connected on a long throw to Mike Evans, Peyton Barber accounted for 30 yards, and a touchdown pass to Cameron Brate sealed the drive giving Tampa Bay a 7-0 lead. The defense played their best quarter all season, allowing a total of only 37 yards and one first down.
Nick Mullens led a 79-yard touchdown drive that took 5:42 off of the clock and lasted 9 plays. Matt Breida totaled 48 yards on the drive, which was capped off by a Dante Pettis touchdown reception to bring San Francisco to within a point. Robbie Gould missed the extra point with the 49ers trailing 6-7. Cairo Santos converted both of his kick attempts at the end of the quarter to give Tampa Bay a 7-13 lead heading into halftime.
Latest From FPC on SportsCastr
Jameis Winston threw for 176 yards in the first half with one touchdown and no interceptions. Mike Evans led the Buccaneers with 75 receiving yards on his four catches. For San Francisco, Nick Mullens was held to 45 yards on his four first half completions but did throw a touchdown. Matt Breida found success on the ground with 80 yards on 10 carries.
The 49ers marched down the field after receiving the second half kickoff. San Francisco reached the 9-yard line for a first and goal, but the defense stood tall. The 49ers were forced to attempt a field goal to bring the score to 9-13. On the ensuing drive, the Buccaneers responded with a touchdown. Peyton Barber scored a rushing touchdown for the second consecutive game to extend the lead to 9-20.
Jameis Winston continued his excellent game with a touchdown pass to open the fourth quarter. Adam Humphries was the recipient as the Buccaneers began to break the game open. Late in the fourth quarter, Ryan Smith caught his first interception of the season. The interception was the first forced turnover since October 21 against the Cleveland Browns.
Jameis Winston finished with 312 yards on 29/38 passing and two touchdowns. Mike Evans totaled 116 yards on his six receptions.
Nick Mullens finished with 221 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions. Matt Breida totaled 106 yards on 14 carries.
Next Sunday, Tampa Bay plays the second game of a three game home stand against the Carolina Panthers at 1:00 est.
San Francisco travels to Seattle to take on the Seahawks next week at 4:25 est.