Baker Mayfield and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers handled the New Orleans Saints and the return of Derek Carr, taking possession of first place in the NFC South. En route to a 26-9 divisional road win, the Bucs held the Saints without a touchdown, improving to 3-1 on the season.
“Woke Up Feelin’ Dangerous”
Since being the top pick in the 2018 draft, Bucs quarterback Baker Mayfield looks to be gelling with his fourth team in revival of his dominance.
Mayfield completed 25 of 32 passes for 246 yards, also airing out three touchdowns to three different players.
This started with a tone-setting drive to open the game and lead for Tampa Bay, that would not be relinquished.
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@Buccaneers) October 1, 2023
The Bucs Hot Hands
Through four games, the two have accounted for 67% of the Buccaneers receiving yards and almost half (48%) of the total offense.
On Sunday, Evans pulled in three catches for 40 yards, before leaving with a tweaked hamstring in the second quarter. Following the game, Bowles told reporters that he believes Evans, “just tweaked it,” and will have more news following testing going into the bye-week.
Godwin took over, racking up eight receptions for 114 yards, taking focus off the rest of the receiving core.
Therefore, this opened the window for a 5-foot-8 Deven Thompkins to lay out for a catch of the game touchdown, collecting four catches for 45 yards on the day.
Tampa Bay Defense
Additionally, the Bucs defense had the momentum shift of the game late in the first half.
Safety Antoine Winfield Jr. forced a fumble in the final seconds of the half, just two plays after a Mayfield blundered interception in the redzone to bail Tampa Bay out of trouble; capitalizing with a Trey Palmer touchdown to take a 14-3 lead into the locker room.
The Buccaneers won the turnover margin, collecting three on the day (10 total), along with three sacks (12 total) holding the Saints to three field goals in the entire game.
This defense is certainly on the rise, averaging just 17 points allowed per game and bounced back in week 4 following a 25-11 loss to the undefeated Philidelphia Eagles in week 3.
The next true test to see the legitimacy of this Buccaneers defense will come in week 6, against the surging Detroit Lions in a noon home matchup at Raymond James Stadium.
Until then, enjoy this Deven Thompkins flip as you start your week.
Flipping into the bye week like… pic.twitter.com/HbpaQqVK13
— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@Buccaneers) October 2, 2023