Sunday, January 6, 2008

Bucs-Giants Quasi Live Blog, Third Quarter

We're back, and Spurlock starts the half by losing the ball on the return. Deadly. Blue starts inside the Buc 30. Jacobs runs for a good looking 7, then a solid 4. It gets harder on the third straight carry, and if Gruden's got a blitz in mind, might be the time for it... Manning has Boss wide open after the DL falls down, but misses. 3rd and long and a big play on a simple screen to Jacobs. The Bucs LBs have been terrible in this game, and it's first and goal.

An incompletion to Burress and a false start pushes it back to the 13. Manning hits Toomer again for a simple and easy short toss, and TB points out that the Bucs aren't punishing the receivers; I agree wholeheartedly. Third and goal from the 4, and ugliness is averted after a delay penalty. Coughlin wants those kids off his lawn. From the 9, Fredo looks mad, and Smith catches it at 6 and is tackled at the 8. It's figgie time. Tynes makes the figgie, and Blue's up 10.

Spurlock to the 30, and Garcia's got some work to do here, and fast. Nice six yard interior burst from Graham, who gets it to a half yard from the first down on second down. Curious to see if they still control the line here, as they did on obvious run plays in the first... and in a near fumble, Graham gets the first. This is why teams go by committee with the RBs.

Graham makes a guy miss for 5 on a screen, and 15 is tacked on when Giants DL Barry Cofield goes high on Garcia. Dumb all over. From the Blue 40, Graham piles up another 10 on a first down draw; nice call and execution by the RB, who has 14 for 53 and the touchdown. They give it to him again for 3, and then Garcia blows the drive with a bad throw in the end zone for Galloway, who isn't open anyway. Giants ball at the 20. Still miss him, Eagles Fans? Buck pours salt on the wound by noting that he has three picks today, four in the regular season.

Giants go three and out as Fredo has a bad series, made worse by a holding penalty. First time since the first quarter that you can say that. Feagles nails the punt, and the Bucs have it at their 33.

On third and 2 following the punt, Garcia has a clean pocket and hits TE Alex Smith for 15, his longest pass of the day. Fox continues to harangue the Bucs for not going deep, despite the QB not having an arm, the deep threat being hurt, and the coach not believing in long throws. But yes, go deep! It's positively Rexy right now. On third and 8 and critical, Garcia almost throws a horrible pick from heavy pressure, and its punting time again. Bucs defense is going to have to force a turnover, one suspects, to get something going right now.

A quick toss to Hedgecock for 4, followed up obvious offensive pass interference by Burress. I'd like the penalty for that to be a lot more severe, since the same call against the defense is usually devastating. Here, it's a whopping five yard loss. Jacobs goes for 4, and it's 3rd and 7 and a big play, given the amount of time and probable field position right now... and Manning avoids a bad pantomime of pressure to make an easy 11 yard toss to Toomer. Blue has the ball, a 10-poing lead, and everything going their way as the third quarter ends.

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