The San Francisco 49ers, led by rookie quarterback Brock Purdy spoiled Tom Brady’s return to the bay as the Niners beat the Buccaneers in every facet of the game 35-7.
Purdy, out of Iowa State, making his first NFL start, completed 16/21 passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for a touchdown to give him three total on the afternoon.
This was the worst effort of the season for the Buccaneers. The Buccaneers were outplayed and outcoached in the 35-7 loss.
The 49ers dominated the game from start to finish. They improved to 9-4 on the season and won their sixth in a row.
Tom Brady contributed to the cause with his worst game of the season, throwing two interceptions and missing receivers all afternoon. He ended the day 35/55 for 253 yards with one touchdown to go with the picks.
Tom Brady talked to the media after the loss. It’s easy to say everyone’s got to play better, but we’re just not playing,” Brady said. “We have just not played consistently well very often. We haven’t played it for four quarters. Maybe we played it a little bit at times but not today at all.”
It’s the same story every week with these press conferences. Bowles, Brady, and everyone else talk about the fact that they are not playing for four quarters, not playing well enough to win. They then challenge everyone to play better.
Just fix the damn problems already!
With these results and the uninspiring play week after week, you wonder what this team does all week.
The run defense, as anticipated, was awful in trying to stop Christian McCaffrey. The Bucs’ defense allowed McCaffrey 119 yards and allowed the 49ers 209 yards on the ground as a team.
With the loss, the Buccaneers are 6-7. But, surprisingly, they are still clinging to first place in the division, one game ahead of Atlanta and Carolina.
The Bucs fell behind quickly, 7-0, and trailed 28-0 by halftime. But by halftime, this game was over at the half.
Once again, penalties hurt the Buccaneers, as the team was penalized eight times for 62 yards. Unfortunately, the first three penalties were highly costly. The first penalty erased a Keanu Neal sack on the game’s first play as Neal was called for roughing the quarterback.
The second penalty took seven points off the board. Donovan Smith was called for holding, which erased a 68-yard Mike Evans touchdown catch.
The third penalty erased a critical third-down stop in the end zone near the end of the opening period. Then, late in the first half, Carlton Davis was called for holding, erasing an Anthony Nelson interception.
Brock Purdy would hit Brandon Aiyuk on the next play to put the 49ers up 28-0.
Two bright spots in the loss were the play of returner Devin Thompkins. Thompkins had a 54-yard kick return to set the Bucs up in excellent field position in the second half.
Thompkins earned the return role in practice last week through open competition. He ended the afternoon averaging 24 yards per kick return and ten yards per punt return.
Rachaad White was the other bright spot offensively, averaging over four yards per carry on thirteen carries.
Coach Todd Bowles played the role of Captain Obvious after the game. “We played bad in all phases,” said Bowles. “We coached bad. We got outcoached. They did a great job. We got our ass kicked on offense. We got our ass kicked on defense.”
This isn’t the first time this season that Bowles has gotten outcoached. But, unfortunately, it seems to happen every week.
The Bucs also had some injuries during the game. Vita Vea left in the first quarter with a strained calf and did not return. Jamel Dean and Joe Tryon-Shoyinka also left the game with injuries.
The Buccaneers were also without Mike Edwards, Antoine Winfield Jr, and Sean Murphy-Bunting against the 49ers as all three were out nursing injuries.
It doesn’t get any easier for the Bucs this week as the red-hot Cincinnati Bengals come to Raymond James Stadium on Sunday.
Bowles said he talked to the players in the locker room about what kind of team they wanted to be. “We have to decide what team we want to be. We can’t be one set of Bucs and another set of Bucs. It’s got to mean something. We’ve got a one-game lead – with four games to go. Either we want it, or we don’t.”
The Bucs will try to turn things around against the Bengals next week at home in a 4:25 PM kickoff.