Bucs’ late comeback bid falls short in 14-12 loss to Packers

In a battle between two future first-ballot Hall of Fame quarterbacks, Aaron Rodgers got the better of Tom Brady on Sunday, leading the Green Bay Packers to a 14-12 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Despite the headlining passers, this was a defensive battle for most of the game, as the Bucs settled down on that side of the ball after giving up back-to-back touchdown drives to start the afternoon. A clutch forced fumble by Vita Vea stopped what would have been a third touchdown drive in a row, as Logan Ryan recovered in the end zone.

The Packers wouldn’t need another score, though, as Tampa Bay’s depleted offense struggled to move the ball for most of the game. The Bucs had a third-string left tackle starting due to multiple injuries, while Brady was missing his top three wide receivers in Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Julio Jones.

Even with everything that was missing, and all of their struggles throughout the game, Brady and the Bucs offense still had a chance to force overtime in the final seconds after mounting their only touchdown drive of the game. But a delay of game penalty thwarted the two-point conversion attempt that could have tied things up, and the Packers recovered the ensuing onside kick to seal the win.

Brady finished the game 31-for-42 for 271 yards and a touchdown, and Russell Gage led the Bucs with 12 receptions for 87 yards and a score. Leonard Fournette managed just 35 yards on 12 carries, and a pair of fumbles compounded Tampa Bay’s offensive struggles.

Mike Edwards led the Bucs with 13 tackles, rookie defensive lineman Logan Hall got his first career sack, and Ryan had his hands in both of Tampa Bay’s takeaways on defense.

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Story originally appeared on Buccaneers Wire