Saints - Bucs In-Game Updates: Bucs 20, Saints 17 (Final

Saints - Bucs In-Game Updates: Bucs 20, Saints 17  (Final

Saints - Bucs In-Game Updates: Bucs 20, Saints 17 (Final

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by Bradley Handwerger / Eyewitness Sports

wwltv.com

Posted on December 27, 2009 at 12:22 PM

Updated Sunday, Dec 27 at 6:01 PM

OVERTIME
Bucs 20, Saints 17: Connor Barth knocked through a 47-yard field and the Bucs streamed onto the field in celebration. The Saints never got the ball after Tampa Bay won the coin toss.

FOURTH QUARTER
Saints 17, Bucs 17 (2:25): Just like that, the Saints went from blowing out Tampa to a tie game. Michael Spurlock returned a punt 76 yards for a touchdown and Connor Barth's extra point tied the game. This all came after the Saints had stopped Tampa on fourth-and-one a short time earlier.

Saints 17, Bucs 14 (13:14): After Courtney Roby downed the ball at the 2-yard line, the Bucs said they didn't care. Tampa Bay drove 98 yards in 4 minutes, 9 seconds and made this a game. Carnell Williams scored on a 23-yard touchdown run.

THIRD QUARTER
Saints 17, Bucs 3 (:00): New ORleans and Tampa  Bay didn't score in the second quarter. But the big news was that New Orleans running back Pierre Thomas left the game with bruised ribs. He won't return but if the Saints win, he'll have about three weeks to rest them.

Saints 17, Bucs 3 (7:38): It looked like Tampa Bay was going to get back into the game, driving to the New Orleans 12-yard line. But with their backs against the wall, Tracy Porter intercepted Josh Freeman and the Saints took over at their own 20.

SECOND QUARTER
Saints 17, Bucs 3 (:00): After forcing the Saints to punt for the first time all day, Tampa Bay traveled to the Saints' 16 before being forced to kick a field goal with :04 left on the clock and no timeouts. Connor Barth nailed it and New Orleans went to halftime with a two-touchdown lead.

The Saints had 203 total yards to Tampa's 189. Drew Brees is 11 of 14 for 107 yards and a touchdown while Pierre Thomas has 60 yards on six carries. And the Saints are averaging 7.5 yards per play.

Saints 17, Bucs 0 (6:39): Garrett Hartley's 28-yard field goal capped a 10-play, 83-yard drive. The field goal put the Saints into 500-point territory this season, the 12th time that's happened in the NFL. The big play on the drive was a 26-yard Pierre Thomas run that was aided by a facemask penalty.

FIRST QUARTER
Saints 14, Bucs 0 (1:32): Drew Brees hit Robert Meachem for a 30-yard touchdown pass set up by Darren Sharper's ninth interception of the year. With his 21 return yards, Shaper set an NFL record for interception return yards in a season with 376. Ed Reed previously held the mark set in 2004.

After running on 9 of the first 12 plays, the Saints set up the Tampa defense and hit three passes in a row, finished by the 30-yard to Meachem. Brees is 6 of 6 for 71 yards as of now.

Saints 7, Bucs 0 (6:47): Pierre Thomas galloped into the end zone from the Bucs' 9 and gave the Saints an early lead. The Saints forced a punt by an opponent on the opening series for the first time since Nov. 15 against St. Louis and turned it seven points. New Orleans ran on 6 of 9 plays and drove 75 yards in 9 plays.

PREGAME
Saints Inactives (13-1): WR Lance Moore, CB Randall Gay, S Usama Young, CB Jabari Greer, LB Scott Shanle, G Jamar Nesbit, TE Jeremy Shockey, DT DeMario Pressley

Saints roster changes: The team added CB Greg Fassitt from the practice squad and cut TE Tory Humphrey on Sunday.

Buccaneers Inactives (2-12): QB Rudy Carpenter (3rd QB), WR Mark Bradley, WR mario Urrutia, RB Kareem Huggins, DL Michael Bennett, G Shawn Murphy, T James Lee, WR Terrance Nunn

Buccaneers changes: The team added WR Mark Bradley and waived CB Brandon Anderson

Notes:

  • The Saints have won two of the past five against Tampa Bay, including a 38-7 trouncing in Florida on Nov. 22.
  • A Saints win or tie or a Minnesota tie or loss hands New Orleans the No. 1 seed in the NFC for the postseason. It would be the first time ever the Saints captured that seed.
  • A win also would give the Saints a 7-1 home record, which would be a franchise best.
  • Drew Brees and Aaron Brooks are tied for second in club history with 38 wins as a starter.

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