Rapid Reaction: Tampa Bay
November, 17, 2013
By Pat Yasinskas | ESPN.com
TAMPA, Fla. -- A few thoughts on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 41-28 victory against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.
What it means: The Bucs are on a winning streak. Yeah, it’s only two games, but that’s pretty substantial for a team that lost its first eight games. The Bucs were loose and relaxed in how they coached and played and that led to their best performance of the season. There had been plenty of times when the Bucs squandered leads earlier in the season. But this time, they firmly put the game out of reach. Coach Greg Schiano remains on the hot seat, but he has a shot to keep his job if the Bucs continue to play like this the rest of the season.
A star is born: With season-ending injuries to Doug Martin and Mike James, the Bucs gave running back Bobby Rainey an opportunity, and he made the most of it. Rainey, who finished with 163 rushing yards, ran for two touchdowns in the first half and caught a touchdown pass in the second half.
A star gets brighter: Gerald McCoy went to the Pro Bowl last season, so it’s not accurate to call him a surprise. But McCoy, who came into the game with three sacks on the season, had the best game of his career. McCoy had three sacks and swatted down a pass.
Stock watch: The deep passing game is on the rise. Schiano had been saying for several weeks that the Bucs had to have more success taking shots down the field. They did against Atlanta. Quarterback Mike Glennon and receiver Vincent Jackson hooked up on a 47-yard pass in the first half and a 53-yard pass in the second half.
Injury update: Middle linebacker Mason Foster intercepted a pass and returned it for a touchdown in the first half. But Foster suffered a concussion sometime in the first half and did not play in the second half.
What’s next: The Buccaneers play at Detroit next Sunday.
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