Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New Orleans Saints Postgame Notes (12/31/17)

- The Buccaneers took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards in 14 plays, taking up 5:18. The drive concluded with a one-yard touchdown run by RB Peyton Barber, his third of the season and the fourth of his career.
 
- Tampa Bay’s second touchdown of the day came on a one-yard scramble from QB Jameis Winston, which finished off a 12-play, 75-yard drive lasting 6:15. The rushing score was Winston’s first of the season and the eighth of his career.
 
- New Orleans took the opening drive of the second half, driving to the 50-yard line, when Buccaneers DE Ryan Russell recorded his second sack of the season, dropping Saints QB Drew Brees for a seven-yard loss, forcing a punt. Russell now has three career sacks.
 
- In the fourth quarter, the Buccaneers special teams added a touchdown, when CB Josh Robinson forced a fumble from Saints PR Tommylee Lewis at the New Orleans seven-yard line, which was recovered by Buccaneers S Isaiah Johnson and returned seven yards for a touchdown. That is the second forced fumble of Robinson’s career and Johnson’s first career fumble recovery, as well as his first career score.
 
- Johnson’s fumble recovery for a touchdown was Tampa Bay’s third this season, tying for the most in a single season in franchise history (also 1992 & 2005).
 
- Tampa Bay added a field goal in the fourth quarter, when K Patrick Murray connected on a 42-yard attempt to end a 10-play, 51-yard drive lasting 2:36.
 
- Trailing the Saints 24-23, the Buccaneers got the ball on the Tampa Bay five-yard line with 1:58 remaining. QB Jameis Winston led an 11-play, 95-yard drive that culminated in a 39-yard touchdown pass to WR Chris Godwin to give the Buccaneers a 29-24 lead with nine seconds remaining. After a two-point conversion to WR Mike Evans, Tampa Bay led 31-24, which was the final.
 
- Winston finished the game completing  28-of-51 for 363 yards and one touchdown. With today’s totals, Winston becomes the first player in franchise history to have consecutive games with at least 350 passing yards. He also added a career-high 32 rushing yards and a rushing touchdown.
 
- Winston now has six games with 300 passing yards this season, extending his single-season team record. Today’s game marks Winston’s 11th career game with 300 passing yards, surpassing Doug Williams (10 from 1978-82) for the second-most such games in franchise history.
 
- Today’s game marks Winston’s eighth career game-winning drive and his fifth-career fourth-quarter comeback.
 
- Winston finishes the 2017 season with 3,504 passing yards, the eighth-most in a single season in team history.

MOST PASSING YARDS - SINGLE SEASON (Team History)
 
Rank          Player                                          Yards
1.               Jameis Winston, 2016                   4,090
2.               Josh Freeman, 2012                     4,065
3.               Jameis Winston, 2015                   4,042
4.               Brad Johnson, 2003                      3,811
5.               Josh Freeman, 2011                     3,592
6.               Doug Williams, 1981                     3,563
7.               Steve DeBerg, 1984                      3,554
8.               Jameis Winston, 2017                 3,504
9.               Josh Freeman, 2010                     3,451
10.             Brad Johnson, 2001                      3,406
 
- Winston now has 11,636 career passing yards, the third-most by a player from their rookie season through their third season, trailing only Andrew Luck and Peyton Manning.
 
MOST PASSING YARDS BY A PLAYER IN HIS FIRST THREE SEASONS
 
Rank          Player                                                    Yards
1.               Andrew Luck (IND, 2012-14)                   12,957
2.               Peyton Manning (IND, 1998-2000)          12,287
3.               Jameis Winston (TB, 2015-17)              11,636
4.               Dan Marino (MIA, 1983-85)                     11,431
5.               Andy Dalton (CIN, 2011-13)                    11,360
6.               Cam Newton (CAR, 2011-13)                  11,299
7.               Ryan Tannehill (MIA, 2012-14)                11,252
8.               Blake Bortles (JAC, 2014-16)                  11,241
9.               Derek Carr (OAK, 2014-16)                     11,194
10.             Drew Bledsoe (NE, 1993-95)                   10,556
 
- Winston now has 69 career passing touchdowns, tied for the seventh-most by a player through their first three seasons.
 
MOST PASSING TOUCHDOWNS BY A PLAYER IN HIS FIRST THREE SEASONS
 
Rank          Player                                                      TD
3.               Dan Marino (MIA, 1983-85)                        98
1.               Andrew Luck (IND, 2012-14)                      86
3.               Peyton Manning (IND, 1998-2000)              85
4.               Derek Carr (OAK, 2014-16)                        81
5.               Andy Dalton (CIN, 2011-13)                       80
6.               Russell Wilson (SEA, 2012-14)                   72
7.               Jameis Winston (TB, 2015-17)                 69
8.               Blake Bortles (JAC, 2014-16)                     69
9.               Matt Ryan (ATL, 2008-10)                          66
10.             Cam Newton (CAR, 2011-13)                     64
 
- WR Chris Godwin had his first career 100-yard receiving game and his first career receiving touchdown, finishing the game with 111 receiving yards and a touchdown.
 
- WR Adam Humphries had a career-high 102 receiving yards in today’s game. He and Godwin are the first Buccaneers teammates to eclipse the 100-yard mark in the same game since the L.A. Rams game in 2016 (Mike Evans and Adam Humphries, 9/25/16).
 
- WR Mike Evans had five catches for 55 yards in today’s game, bringing his season total to 1,001 receiving yards. He now has over 1,000 receiving yards in each of his first four seasons, joining A.J. Green and Randy Moss as the only players in NFL history to do so. He is also the first Buccaneers player to post four 1,000-yard receiving seasons.
 
- Evans now has 4,579 career receiving yards, the sixth-most by a player through their first four seasons since the 1970 NFL/AFL Merger.
 
MOST RECEIVING YARDS BY A PLAYER IN HIS FIRST FOUR SEASONS
(Since 1970 Merger)
                                                                                                                       
Rank          Player                                                    Yards
1.               Randy Moss (MIN, 1998-2001)                5,396
2.               Torry Holt (STL, 1999-2002)                    5,088
3.               Jerry Rice (SF, 1985-88)                         4,881
4.               A.J. Green (CIN, 2011-14)                       4,874
5.               Anquan Boldin (ARI, 2003-06)                 4,605
6.               Mike Evans (TB, 2014-17)                      4,579
7.               Larry Fitzgerald (ARI, 2004-07)                4,544
8.               DeAndre Hopkins (HOU, 2013-16)           4.487
9.               Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG, 2014-17)          4,424
10.             T.Y. Hilton (IND, 2012-15)                       4,413
 
- With today’s totals, Evans now has 309 career receptions, passing Mike Alstott and Warrick Dunn for the third-most catches in team history.
 
MOST RECEPTIONS - (Team History)
 
Rank      Player                                                       Rec.
1.           RB James Wilder, 1981-89                         430
2.           WR Mark Carrier, 1987-92                          321
3.           WR Mike Evans, 2014-Pres.                      309
4.           RB Warrick Dunn, 1997-2001, 2008            306
5.           FB Mike Alstott, 1996-2006                         305
6.           WR Keyshawn Johnson, 2000-03                298
7.           WR Kevin House, 1980-86                          286
8.           RB Michael Pittman, 2002-07                      284
9.           TE Jimmie Giles, 1978-86                           279
10.         WR Vincent Jackson, 2012-16                    268
 
- The Buccaneers had 28 first downs in today’s game, tied for the fifth-most in a game in franchise history.
 
MOST FIRST DOWNS IN A SINGLE GAME - (Team History)
 
Yards      Opponent                                                           Date
1. 30        vs. L.A. Rams                                                 9/25/16
1. 30        at St. Louis                                                   12/17/15
1. 30        vs. Atlanta                                                     12/24/05
1. 30        vs. Atlanta                                                      9/13/87
5. 28        seven times, most recent vs. New Orleans  12/31/17
 
- Tampa Bay had 13 third-down conversions in today’s game, a single-game franchise record and tied for the most by any team in the NFL this season.
 
MOST THIRD-DOWN CONVERSIONS IN A SINGLE GAME - (Team History)
 
Yards      Opponent                                                           Date
1. 13        vs. New Orleans                                          12/31/17
2. 12        vs. Arizona                                                     11/4/07
2. 12        vs. Atlanta                                                      11/9/14
4. 11        at Kansas City                                               11/20/16
4. 11        at New Orleans                                               11/7/99
 
2017 NFL MOST THIRD DOWN CONVERSIONS IN A SINGLE GAME
 
Yards      Team & Opponent                                               Date
1. 13        Tampa Bay vs. New Orleans                        12/31/17
1. 13        L.A. Rams vs. Arizona                                   10/22/17
1. 13        N.Y. Jets vs. Kansas City                                12/3/17
4. 12        Denver vs. Cincinnati                                     11/19/17
4. 12        Jacksonville vs. Cincinnati                               11/5/17
4. 12        Pittsburgh vs. Baltimore                                 12/10/17
 
- The Buccaneers finished the season averaging 7.61 pass yards per attempt, a franchise record. The team also set a franchise record in pass completions (378), pass attempts (605), passing first downs (243), total first downs (352).
 
- The Buccaneers finished the 2017 season with 5,816 net yards, the third-most in team history.
 
MOST NET YARDS - SINGLE SEASON (Team History)
 
Rank          Season                                        Yards
1.               2015                                            6,014
2.               2012                                            5,820
3.               2017                                            5,816
4.               2016                                            5,542
5.               2008                                            5,456
 
- The Buccaneers finished the 2017 season converting 43.4 percent of their third downs, the second-highest mark in team history.
 
HIGHEST THIRD DOWN PERCENTAGE - SINGLE SEASON (Team History)
 
Rank          Season                                          Pct.
1.               2016                                             43.9
2.               2017                                             43.4
3.               1984                                             42.9
4.               2010                                             42.2
5.               2015                                             41.6
 
- The Buccaneers finished the 2017 season with 335 points, tied for the eight-most in team history.
 
MOST POINTS - SINGLE SEASON (Team History)
 
Rank          Season                                        Points
1.               2012                                              389
2.               2000                                              388
3.               2008                                              361
4.               2016                                              354
5.               2002                                              346
6.               2015                                              342
7.               2010                                              341
8.               1984                                              335
8.               2017                                              335
10.             2007                                              334
 
- LB Nigel Harris made his Buccaneers debut in today’s game.
 
- WR Bobo Wilson made his first career start in today’s game.
 
- Today’s inactives:
#4    QB   Ryan Griffin
#11  WR  DeSean Jackson
#27  CB   David Rivers
#59  LB    Devante Bond
#72  OL   Adam Gettis
#79  DE   Patrick O’Connor
#91  DE   Robert Ayers

- Today’s starting lineups:

 OFFENSE
WR    #85  Bobo Wilson
WR    #10  Adam Humphries
LT     #76  Donovan Smith
LG     #64  Kevin Pamphile
C       #68  Joe Hawley
RG    #62  Evan Smith
RT     #77  Caleb Benenoch
TE     #82  Antony Auclair
WR    #13  Mike Evans
QB    #3    Jameis Winston
RB     #25  Peyton Barber
 
DEFENSE
DE     #95  Ryan Russell
DT     #93  Gerald McCoy
DT     #98  Clinton McDonald
SLB   #51  Kendell Beckwith
MLB  #58  Kwon Alexander
WLB  #54  Lavonte David
CB     #36  Robert McClain
CB     #24  Brent Grimes
CB     #29  Ryan Smith
S       #23  Chris Conte
S       #43  T.J. Ward


- Today’s attendance: 55,376