Tampa Bay Buccaneers Win First Playoff Game Since 2002, Defeat Washington Football Team 31-23

By  //  January 10, 2021

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Tom Brady throws for 381 yards, 2 touchdowns

ABOVE VIDEO: Buccaneers vs. Washington Football Team Super Wild Card Weekend Highlights

WASHINGTON D.C. (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) – Tom Brady threw for 381 yards and two touchdowns as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Washington Football Team, 31-23, in an NFC Wild Card game on Saturday night at FedExField.

The Buccaneers will now move on to a Divisional Round game either at New Orleans or at home against the Los Angeles Rams next weekend.

“A lot of guys are enjoying the win, but our work’s not done,” said offensive tackle Donovan Smith. “For tonight we’re going to sit here and enjoy it but we’re going to get back to the drawing board for some things we want to correct.”

The victory was the franchise’s first win in the playoffs since it defeated the Oakland Raiders, 48-21, in Super Bowl XXXVII. It was the second postseason road victory in team history following the game that got the Bucs to that Super Bowl, the 27-10 win at Philadelphia in the 2002 NFC Championship Game. The Buccaneers have now won seven of their nine road games this season.

Fournette, playing for an injured Ronald Jones, accounted for 132 yards from scrimmage, his highest total of the season. (TB Buccaneers Image)

“It’s huge,” said Head Coach Bruce Arians. “I wish we could play at home, but we can’t unless certain things fall. Then I wish the stadium would be packed. Hopefully we’ll play better next week than we did this week.”

The Buccaneers led by just five points early in the fourth quarter but made it a two-score game with nine minutes left on Leonard Fournette‘s three-yard touchdown run with nine minutes left.

Fournette, playing for an injured Ronald Jones, accounted for 132 yards from scrimmage, his highest total of the season. That was the assist QB Tom Brady needed to help crack the NFL’s fourth-best scoring defense, as he threw for 381 yards and two touchdowns on 22 of 40 passing.

“It was a tough, hard-nosed game,” said Brady. “Washington had a lot of fight in them. We had an opportunity to pull away and just couldn’t quite do it. We didn’t score enough points in the red area so there’s certainly a lot to improve on. But it’s great to get a win and figure out who we’re playing tomorrow and go from there.

The game was billed as a matchup between Brady and the Bucs’ high-powered offense against a Washington defense led by NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Chase Young and its star-studded defensive front. However, Brady enjoyed good protection for most of the evening and finished with a passer rating of 104.3.