Bucs win wild back and fourth contest. After taking a 31-14 lead, the young Bucs fell behind late in the fourth quarter to the Cardinals 31-35 but ultimately behind some spectacular plays by rookie running back Legarrette Blount, rookie receiver Arrelious Benn and second year quarterback Josh Freeman the Bucs rallied with just over five minutes remaining in the game to take a three point lead as Blount plowed his way into the endzone for a one yard touchdown plunge, that was set up by Freeman hitting Benn on a 53 yard pass.
Of course we would be remised if we didn’t mention the timely turnovers that the defense caused in this game. Four to be exact all interceptions, with two being returned for touchdowns, one each by Geno Hayes and Aqib Talib.
5-dash-2 – Oh! How sweet it is to be 5-dash-2. Whether you believe in the Raheem Morris led Buccaneers or are just now starting to swig on the kool aid. Morris has the youngest team in the NFL in the thick of the playoff picture.
Legarrtte Blount – 22 carries for 120-yards and two touchdowns is impressive in and of its self. But what was even more impressive is Blount’s ability to point out his pass protection responsibilities pre snap. Throughout the game Blount was consistently picking out his blocking assignments and pointing would be pass rushers out. Overall even with the costly fumble that was returned for 21 yards and a score. Blount showed plenty of power, wiggle and some nifty moves for such a big back.
Offensive Line – The Bucs offensive line was flat out incredible. What more needs to be said about the most complete performance by a cast of no names. Donald Penn, Ted Larsen, Jeremy Zuttah, Davin Joseph and James Lee. Who would have thunk it. The line played excellent keeping Freeman clean and giving him time to throw. They even opened up some holes in the running game.
Josh Freeman – Freeman completed 72% of his passes made some big time throws and even engineered another late game rally. Freeman has evened his record as a starter at 8-8 after 16 starts. The late game heroics and moxie by a player, playing well above his listed age has Buc Nation in a frenzy.
Receivers – The trio of Mike Williams, Arrelious Benn and Micheal Spurlock combined for 8 catches, 218-yards and one touchdown and a 27.25 yard per catch average.
Defense – Even though the defense had some shaky moments in the game. It’s hard to knock a unit that held the Cardinals to 100 yards rushing on 23 carries and forced four interceptions returning two for touchdowns.
The Bad & The Ugly
After pulling even with the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC South – going to savor this win. No sense in trying to point out a few negatives in a game as thrilling as this one. It’s still a work in progress, but oh how sweet it is to be 5-dash-2 with such a young team. The future truly is bright if they continue to show exponential growth the rest of the season.