Bucs rally to win wild game- snap four game skid
Florida Football Insiders, published 11 November 2019

Back home for the first time in 6 weeks and desperate for a win, the Bucs outplayed the Cardinals and their rookie quarterback Kyler Murray when it mattered the most. Rookie defensive back Jamel Dean picked Murray off at the Tampa Bay 8-yard line and the Buccaneers then went 92 yards for the eventual game-winning touchdown in a wild 30 – 27 victory.

The Bucs had been away from Raymond James Stadium since September 22nd, including one “home away from home game” in London, England. Tampa Bay had dropped four straight to face the Cardinals coming in and first-year Coach Bruce Arians (above) going against his old team. Arians coached the Cards from 2013-17, including two playoff berths.

Tampa Bay played well in the first half and took a 17 – 13 lead to intermission, when QB Jameis Winston hit O.J. Howard with a 10 yard touchdown pass with :08 to go in the second quarter. Undaunted, Murray came out in the second half and hit Christian Kirk with a 69-yard bomb, his second TD catch of the day, and later another a 15-yard scoring strike for Kirk in the fourth quarter that put in Arizona up for the first time all day at 27 – 23.

The Bucs then gave away a chance to take the lead, when running back Ronald Jones fumbled the ball after a reception without being touched and Arizona defensive back Budda Baker recovered at their 44-yard line. Murray had a chance to all but put the game away with the Cardinals leading by 4 and time winding down under five minutes. However, as they moved into scoring range, Murray’s pass was intercepted by the former second round pick, Dean. It was Murray’s first interception in over 200 pass attempts, which had set an NFL rookie record.

Then QB Jameis Winston led Tampa Bay on a 92-yard scoring march that included him hitting Chris Godwin for 49 yards on a catch-and-run. Then, Mike Evans drew a pass interference penalty that critically put the ball down to the 1-yard line. Initially, there was no call on the field but the New York officiating command center reviewed the play and ruled the Cardinal defensive back had taken Evans down in the end zone. Three plays later running back Peyton Barber rumbled in with 1:43 remaining to put Tampa Bay back in front for good 30-27.

Winston finished 30-48 for 358 yards 1 TD and 2 INTs and became the first Bucs QB in history to throw for 300 yards or more in four straight games. Still, Arizona only needed a field goal to tie, but Murray could not get the Cardinals into range. This as, he was hit as he threw going deep left again to Kirk with :15 seconds left and the ball fell incomplete.

And then, on the final play of the game, he was looking long to WR Pharoh Cooper and the pass was broken up again by the rookie Dean to end it. The Cards rookie #1 overall pick tallied 27-44 for 344 yards with 3 TDs but the costly INT, as well. Tampa Bay improved to 3 – 6 on the season and will now play host to the New Orleans Saints at home next week Arizona drops to 3 – 6 – 1 with the defeat