Buccaneers Win Puts Team in NFC Elite Conversation

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Via Sports Talk Florida
Special to Bucs Report

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Leonard Fournette capped a four-touchdown game with a 28-yard scoring run with 20 seconds left Sunday, giving Tampa Bay a 38-31 come-from-behind victory at Indianapolis.

Tom Brady led the Buccaneers (8-3) on the eight-play, 75-yard tiebreaking drive after getting the ball back with 3:29 to go. Fournette rushed 17 times for 100 yards and three scores. He also caught Brady’s only touchdown pass.

Getting Hot at the Right Time

The defending Super Bowl champs have won two straight overall while Brady improved to 16-4 all time against the Colts in his first appearance with Tampa Bay.

Indy (6-6) had a chance to force overtime when Isaiah Rodgers returned the kickoff 71 yards to the Buccaneers 32-yard line with 10 seconds left. But Carson Wentz’s first pass to Jack Doyle fell incomplete and former Colts cornerback Pierre Desir picked off Wentz near the goal line as time expired.

The difference was turnovers. Tampa Bay converted its first three takeaways into 17 points — two taking away Colts scoring chances.

Indy controlled the first half when it took a 24-14 lead.

But the Bucs swung the momentum when Shaquil Barrett sacked Wentz early in the second half, ripped the ball out and recovered it at the Bucs 35. Six plays later, Fournette scored on a 4-yard TD run.

Jr.Vs.Jr.

On the Colts’ next series, Antoine Winfield outfought Michael Pittman Jr. for the ball and Brady wasted no time converting that mistake another score — Ronald Jones’ 1-yard TD run for a 28-24 lead with 1:06 left in the third quarter.

Tampa Bay made it 31-24 with a short field goal following Nyheim Hines’ fumble on a punt return and Indy tied it on Jonathan Taylor’s 4-yard TD run with 3:29 remaining.

But that was too much time for Brady, who took the Buccaneers right down the field.

Injury Report

Buccaneers: Linebacker Devin White started despite being listed as questionable with a quadriceps injury but left in the first half after hurting his hip. He returned in the second half. Defensive tackle Vita Vea left briefly after losing a tooth and starting cornerback Jamel Dean was knocked out of the game in the first quarter with an injured right shoulder.

Colts: Defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, a 2020 All-Pro, left late in the first half with a right knee injury but returned to the lineup at the start of the third quarter.

Up Next

Buccaneers: Visit Atlanta next Sunday.

Colts: Head to Houston next Sunday, seeking a season sweep of the Texans.

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