The Tampa Bay Buccaneers fell to 7-4 after losing to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, November 28th. The final score was 17-10. The Bucs still remain in a tight three-way race with the 9-2 Falcons and the 8-3 Saints in the NFC South. One concern for Tampa Bay is that they still have not beaten a team with a winning record. The combined record of opponents they have defeated is 12-22, with losses coming from 8-3 Pittsburgh, 8-3 New Orleans, 9-2 Atlanta, and 8-3 Baltimore.
After the loss, quarterback Josh Freeman said, “I played extremely poor.” He completed only 17 of 37 passes for 162 yards and a passer rating of 67.6. The outing by Freeman saw several passes sail too high while others were aimed at the receiver’s feet. There were even sloppy sidearm and underhanded throws. He stated that he can’t contribute his poor performance to the Ravens or the cold weather. He believes it was just an off game.
The first half started out as a defensive battle for field position. The game was tied up at 3-3 when Ravens TE Todd Heap caught a 65 yard pass for a touchdown in the 2nd quarter. The Ravens then mounted a 55 yard drive and tacked on 7 more points from a 10 yard pass to WR Derrick Mason. The late rally came in the last four minutes of the half to give the Ravens a 17-3 lead. Tampa Bay’s score came from a 22 yard field goal by Connor Barth after an interception by Aqib Talib.
The Buccaneers have become known for their 4th quarter rallies this season. But this time there would be no come-from-behind win. The defense did all that it could by shutting down the Ravens for the entire second half. Freeman also orchestrated a 77 yard drive that ended in a 5 yard pass to Kellen Winslow for a touchdown. This pulled the Bucs within 7 points, but was not quite enough.
Tampa Bay ended the game with 162 passing yards and 101 yards rushing for 263 total yards of offense. Baltimore racked up 349 yards. The Ravens rushed for 92 yards and gained 257 through the air. The Bucs lost two of their best players due to injuries that took place in Sunday’s game. Safety Cody Grimm and guard Davin Joseph will be placed on the Injured Reserve list, ending their seasons.