Defence comes up for Bucs

MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:40 PM ET

TAMPA -- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers came into Sunday's game with a big zero on the defensive side of the ledger.

In their first two games of the season, the defensive line had yet to record a sack as in ZERO.

On Sunday, they were facing one of the more accurate passers in the league in Matt Ryan and if they were to have any success this day the D-line knew they would have to harry and hurry the Falcons quarterback.

Early on you knew this day was going to be different as in the opening minutes Ryan would get sacked by linebacker Dekoda Watson and that would put some life into the Bucs pass rush that would last the afternoon.

By the end of the game Ryan would be sacked four times including sacks by defensive tackle Brian Price and defensive end Adrian Clayborn.

"I think the whole D-line had a pretty good game," Clayborn said. "We got after Matt Ryan. They gave us a little more five-step drops and we took advantage of it. We knew that's what we had to do and we took advantage of it."

The result was two Ryan fumbles and an interception.

Good day for the Bucs D.

NO CLASSIC

The game was not a classic in any way, shape or form.

It was a toe-to-toe slugfest with a lot of missed punches, too many flags and not much in the way of sparkling offensive plays.

A running game, forget it.

The Atlanta Falcons chewed up all of 30 yards on 15 carries while the Buccaneers gained 115 yards, but it took them 36 trips to do so.

Still, the game provided one nugget of uniqueness, a stunning development that came in the final minutes of the third quarter.

On first down at their own 18, Tampa Bay quarterback Josh Freeman completed a desperation pass to running back LeGarrette Blount that went for a four yard loss. Or so we thought.

But then a flag came out on the field from a coach challenging the play.

The flag, however, was thrown by Buccaneers coach Raheem Morris, who believed the ball was caught on the one hop. So instead of a completion, Morris was looking for an incomplete pass and in effect receive a four-yard gain.

That's right, he threw a flag to ask the officials to review what was ruled a complete pass by his own team.

Minutes later the referee made his call -- an incomplete pass.

Not your every day challenge.


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