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Brady rallies Bucs to win over Saints

by FRED GOODALL AP Sports Writer | December 6, 2022 at 3:20 a.m.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) drops back to pass in the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)

TAMPA, Fla. -- Tom Brady threw a pair of touchdown passes in the final three minutes Monday night, helping the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rally from a 13-point deficit to beat the New Orleans Saints 17-16 and tighten their grip on first place in the weak NFC South.

The seven-time Super Bowl champion tossed a 1-yard TD pass to rookie Cade Otton, finishing a 91-yard drive to pull within 16-10 with exactly three minutes remaining. He got the ball back with 2:29 to go, then won it with a 6-yard throw to another rookie, Rachaad White, with three seconds left.

Andy Dalton threw for 225 yards and a touchdown without an interception for New Orleans, but the Saints ultimately paid for having to settle for three field goals by Wil Lutz on drives deep into Bucs territory.

The Bucs (6-6) extended their division lead over the Atlanta Falcons to 11/2 games. The last-place Saints (4-9) missed out on opportunity to pull into a tie for second with the Falcons. None of the four teams in the NFC South has a winning record.

Brady, who before the game exchanged greetings with the biggest prize on this winter's baseball free agent market AL MVP Aaron Judge, finished 36 of 54 for 281 yards and 2 touchdowns.

A week after being shutout for the first time in 332 games, the Saints built a 10-3 halftime lead on Dalton's 30-yard scoring pass to Taysom Hill and a 38-yard field goal set up by just the third interception Brady has thrown all season.

An interception by Demario Davis (Arkansas State) was only the eighth takeaway New Orleans defense -- by far a league-low -- in 13 games. Defensive end Cameron Jordan later forced a fumble that the Saints turned into a 12-play, 7-minute, 20-second drive that Lutz finished with a 21-yard field goal, making it 13-3 late in the third quarter.

Judge was on the sidelines before the game -- posing for pictures, signing autographs and wearing a Mike Evans No. 13 Buccaneers jersey. The team also tweeted a short video of Brady greeting the slugger, who has an offseason home in Tampa, where the New York Yankees hold spring training. Judge set an American League record with 62 homers with the Yankees this year. He also led the AL with 131 RBI and finished second with a .311 batting average.

New Orleans01033--16

Tampa Bay30014--17

First Quarter

TB--FG Succop 21, 6:25.

Second Quarter

NO--Hill 30 pass from Dalton (Lutz kick), 7:33.

NO--FG Lutz 38, :20.

Third Quarter

NO--FG Lutz 21, 2:46.

Fourth Quarter

NO--FG Lutz 29, 8:02.

TB--Otton 1 pass from Brady (Succop kick), 3:00.

TB--R.White 6 pass from Brady (Succop kick), :03.

Attendance--68,709

NOTB

First downs1425

Total Net Yards304350

Rushes-yards25-6620-76

Passing238274

Punt Returns2-592-20

Kickoff Returns1-301-25

Interceptions Ret.1-40-0

Comp-Att-Int21-29-036-54-1

Sacked-Yards Lost2-181-7

Punts6-43.6675-49.4

Fumbles-Lost0-01-1

Penalties-Yards6-844-39

Time of Possession30:1929:41

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING--New Orleans, Ingram 7-27, Kamara 12-26, Hill 3-10, Prentice 1-2, Dalton 1-1, Shaheed 1-0. Tampa Bay, Fournette 10-49, R.White 9-28, Brady 1-(minus 1).

PASSING--New Orleans, Dalton 20-28-0-235, Hill 1-1-0-21. Tampa Bay, Brady 36-54-1-281.

RECEIVING--New Orleans, Ingram 5-22, Shaheed 4-81, Olave 4-65, Hill 2-35, Trautman 2-28, Landry 2-14, Kamara 2-11. Tampa Bay, Godwin 8-63, R.White 6-41, Fournette 6-32, Otton 6-28, Evans 4-59, Jones 3-28, Kieft 1-12, Gage 1-11, Miller 1-7.

  photo  Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws a touchdown pass to tight end Cade Otton in the second half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
 
 
  photo  New Orleans Saints Taysom Hill (7) celebrates his touchdown reception with tight end Adam Trautman (82) in the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
 
 
  photo  New Orleans Saints cornerback Alontae Taylor (27) celebrates a defensive stop with defensive end Malcolm Roach in the first half of an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
 
 
  photo  New Orleans Saints Taysom Hill (7) pulls in a touchdown pass in the first half of an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
 
 
  photo  Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David (54) brings down New Orleans Saints quarterback Andy Dalton (14) in the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
 
 
  photo  Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Keanu Neal (22) brake up a pass intended for New Orleans Saints wide receiver Chris Olave (12) in the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
 
 
  photo  New Orleans Saints Taysom Hill (7) runs to the end zone ahead of Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Keanu Neal (22) on a touchdown reception in the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
 
 
  photo  Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) passes under pressure from New Orleans Saints defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon (90) in the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Dec. 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
 
 


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