Falcons survive tying field goal try in 24-21 victory over Buccaneers


Patrick Murray‘s 54-yard field goal try sailed wide right as time expired as the Atlanta Falcons held on for a 24-21 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday night.

A sack of Matt Ryan by Buccaneers defensive tackle Clinton McDonald enabled Tampa Bay to get the ball back with one minute remaining. Jameis Winston completed three passes to move the Buccaneers into range for a tying field goal try only to have the attempt just slice outside the right upright.

Devonta Freeman rushed for 126 yards and a touchdown and converted a pivotal third down on Atlanta’s final possession. He also led the team in receiving with five catches for 68 yards.

Freeman’s big night was part of 201 rushing yards racked up by the Atlanta offense against a Buccaneers defense that lost several players to injury throughout the night. Ten Buccaneers in total were announced with injuries at some point during the night.

Matt Ryan added a touchdown pass to Justin Hardy and threw for 212 yards on the night as the Falcons did just enough to hold off the Buccaneers.

Jameis Winston completed 24 of 30 passes for 264 yards and three touchdowns in one of best performances of the season and in his career. Winston’s 130.5 passer rating is the second best of his career, trailing only a 131.6 performance against Philadelphia in 2015.

Hardy’s 6-yard touchdown from Ryan capped a nine-play, 62-yard drive to give Atlanta a 7-0 lead. Tampa Bay responded with a 75-yard drive with tight end O.J. Howard hauling in a 30-yard touchdown pass from Winston.

Levine Toilolo recovered a Freeman fumble in the end zone for a touchdown and Matt Bryant added a 57-yard field goal to take a 17-7 lead into halftime.

Mike Evans caught a 42-yard touchdown pass from Winston and William Gholston blocked a 33-yard field goal try from Bryant to keep Tampa Bay within three. However, Freeman broke off a 32-yard touchdown midway through the fourth quarter to grab a 24-14 lead.

Adam Humphries caught a 16-yard touchdown from Winston with 4:07 remaining and the Buccaneers defense did enough to get their offense one more shot before Murray’s kick sailed wide.

22 responses to “Falcons survive tying field goal try in 24-21 victory over Buccaneers

  1. But but but I thought Packas are going to make the playoffs and win super bowl? Dream dead as always. Might as well root for ur neighbor Vikings.

  2. Detroit has the easiest route to the wild card! Falcons will not win either of their last two games. Dallas could upset the Eagles with zeke back and wentz out, but it won’t be enough if Detroit wins out.

  3. The Falcons NOT dominating a team like the bucs does make one question will they rise up to the level of play needed to beat the next 2 or even win in the playoffs if they get in…

    Playoff teams should never struggle when playing teams like the Browns or bucs…
    Interesting note: I use to add the Jags and Rams to that list but they have finally become respectable teams..

  4. How many games are the Falcons going to win by the other team missing field goals?
    The Jets missed 2 FG and At won by 5
    Now Murray misses wide right

  5. I wonder how the Falcons will do in New Orleans. Maybe the league won’t put an ex-Falcons player as a red for the game this time. Funny how they left that out of the official game notes before the matchup in Atlanta.

  6. Jon Gruden is the worst color guy on TV now. He literally talks like every player on the field is going to the hall of fame. he’s become Dick Vitale. What everyone loves about Romo is that he gives you actual insight into how the game works. Gruden…blah blah blah…

  7. An entertaining game from start to finish. The Falcons are dangerous and can still claim the division with 2 more wins. The Bucs have a solid young nucleus of good offensive and defensive players, for the future. If Tampa can get a couple of good young pass rushers in the Draft, they will be formidable. But for the remainder of this season, it will be fun to watch Atlanta, New Orleans and Carolina slug it out for the NFC South title!

  8. There should have been a 10 yard defensive delay of game on the last play. The bucs would have had a chance for one more play and perhaps 5 more yards, as well. That was a controversial non-call by the refs, not the correctly applied rule in the Steelers loss

  9. Gruden: Alt has the best 1, 2 punch backfield…. Guess dude hasn’t heard about some guy named Karama and a bruiser named Ingram, oh and how they breaking every offensive combo backfield record in history.

  10. Sure glad Cody can make multiple posts that make no sense, and fake packer fans can post all they want, yet most of mine get deleted. Wonderful job mods.

  11. Normally I find Grudens’ musings superfluous, but the comment he made about penalizing Crablegs for throwing the ball that got his receiver wacked was spot on. That throw reminded me of plenty that I’ve seen Gomer throw over the years. The defensive guy got a personal foul on the play, but it looked like the receiver lowered his head as he was about to catch the ball and that is why the helmet to helmet contact happened. If you watch Drew Brees, Tom Brady and to some extent Aaron Rodgers – they do not generally put the receiver at risk.

    I was surprised to hear Gruden say something I agreed with.

  12. Many of the Buccaneer players knew last night that they are now playing for their professional lives. They need some good film for the next coaching staff to keep them around next year. This effort wasn’t about saving Koetter’s job. Everyone knows that he is Dead Man Walking. It baffles me that NFL defensive players still don’t know how to tackle. And the defensive coaches seem to have done nothing to correct the situation.
    The GM needs to start packing up hos office too. He has sat on his hands since the start of the season in an effort to upgrade the offense. There is still hope for Winston if he can get some competent coaching before he gets run out of town in order to win a Super Bowl somewhere else.

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