Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) greet each other after an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 2, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. The Chiefs won 41-31. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

Buccaneers fall to Mahomes Magic

Round six of the Brady-Mahomes epic saw the Chiefs avenge their Super Bowl LV loss with a 41-31 win over the Buccaneers.

A true quarterback duel saw a more efficient, more accurate and higher-rated Tom Brady. But when the dust settled on the gunslingers, Brady’s 385 yards on a 75% completion rate for three touchdowns was not enough and neither was 114.7 rating.

Patrick Mahomes threw for 249 yards, three touchdowns and an interception — the only blemish on a night where Mahomes had the keys to the Bucs’ stingy defense.

Lost coin toss, lost possession, lost the game

The scales seemed to be tipped against the Bucs on a night where they would need everything to subdue Mahomes. Even the coin toss went against the Bucs who returned the kickoff 25 yards before fumbling possession. 42 seconds and a bullet later the Chiefs were up a score.

The Bucs would have to settle for three points on the next drive. Then, the Chiefs responded with a three-yard touchdown run from Clyde Edwards-Helaire out of the wildcat.

Mahomes, the magician

Forget the scrambles and sidearms that make Mahomes the heir to Brady’s throne. Second and goal with more than 11 minutes to go meant a play that would’ve made more sense on the highlight reel of Super Bowl LV.

It was a potion that had been brewing since that historic night of February 7, 2021.

Play action, scramble to the right, eyes scanning deep. A step-back, a spin move and a flick of the wrist for Mahomes. On the turf, this shot was worth six points as Edwards-Helaire caught a highlight for a 21-3 Kansas City lead.

Bucs outmatched

Down 18 in the first half, Brady began to step up for the Buccaneers. He moved the chains on first down four consecutive times to set the tempo for a comeback.

Just under nine minutes to go and a 13-yard pass to Mike Evans meant the first Bucs touchdown in what had been an uncharted endzone up to that point.

L’Jarius Sneed would see his sack redeemed for six points as the Chiefs’ magic continued with a Noah Gray quarterback sneak.

Brady and Evans struck again before the end of the half as the Bucs covered 75 yards in two minutes and one second. Behind Brady’s arm, the Bucs went into the locker room trailing the Chiefs 28-17.

Bucs can’t answer

The Chiefs would add 10 straight on the back of Mahomes’ best performance of the season. With a 38-17 deficit, Brady needed to harness whatever Mahomes had going on and rob him of it.

Brady continued to find success in his trusted arm as he drove 74 yards downfield.

Rachaad White punched in a touchdown with a one-yard rush, bringing the Bucs within two scores.

The Chiefs answered with their final three points of the night via a Matthew Wright 32-yard field goal for a 41-24 Kansas City lead.

Sean Murphy-Bunting gave the Bucs defense something to celebrate, at long last, as he picked off Mahomes deep in the fourth.

What Leonard Fournette could not do on the ground, he made up for it in the air as he caught a five-yard touchdown reception. Fournette would end the game with 57 receiving yards for one touchdown. The ground game would be a different story. Moreover, he finished with negative three yards in three carries.

In the end, though Brady could keep up with Mahomes’ magic, the Bucs could not keep up with the Chiefs as a unit.

The Chiefs finished the game having outrushed the Bucs by 186 yards with the Bucs’ two lost fumbles to boot.

The Buccaneers look ahead

As Tampa Bay falls to 2-2 on the season, a look ahead at the Falcons should provide the road back to winning ways. Sunday’s home game against Atlanta will mean the leader of the NFC South at the end of Week 5, giving the Bucs a chance to get their first win at home for the season.

About Rafael De Los Santos

Junior studying Journalism - Sports & Media at the University of Florida

Check Also

Bucs Fall to Browns in OT 23-17

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ two-game winning streak was snapped Sunday after falling to the Cleveland …