Not so deep thoughts after the Bucs outlasted the Colts 24-17 Monday night.
1. The Bucs have a knack for these fourth quarter finishes. Tampa took its first lead of the game with under four minutes left on a 35-yard LeGarrette Blount power run to the end zone. They quickly got the ball back and closed out the game on the ground.
2. The next step for Tampa: Play better during the first three quarters. They were flat, especially on offense, in the first half. The Bucs are the type of team that keeps it close with any team — good and bad. Truly good teams know how to win by two scores occasionally.
3. The Colts did a remarkable job considering all their injuries. They were down to one true defensive tackle after Eric Foster and Drake Nevis were injured. They lost starting rookie left tackle Anthony Castonzo early in the game. Second round pick tackle Ben Ijalana got hurt in the fourth quarter.
4. Curtis Painter showed enough to keep the Colts starting job. He didn’t complete half his passes (13-for-30), but he connected on two long strikes to Pierre Garcon, avoided the big mistake, and moved the ball fairly well at times. They put up 318 yards despite only having the ball for 21 minutes. Painter had no answer for the blitz, though.
5. The Colts are giving fans the best of both worlds. They are playing hard at 0-4, but staying in great position in the “Suck for Luck” campaign.
6. Tampa’s young defensive line took the game over in the fourth quarter. 2010 No. 3 pick Gerald McCoy had a big night. Michael Bennett and Adrian Clayborn are both nice young players.
7. Tampa is 3-1, but two of those wins came against 0-4 teams. They need to find more weapons on offense to be a Super Bowl contender, but there’s no denying this group is greater than the sum of its youngry parts.