TAMPA, Fla. – The Bucs get a 75-yard touchdown from Mike Evans and hold off the Carolina Panthers 21-18 as Evans goes over 1,000 yards for his 10th year in a row and keeps alive their playoff hopes.
“I’m happy we got the win, most importantly,” Evans said. “I’m happy with the record, obviously. I’ve had a lot of great quarterbacks, offensive coordinators who believed in me and I really appreciate them. I hope I can keep that streak going for however long my career goes.”
Evans ended up with seven catches for 162 yards putting him at 1,012 yards and 10 scores on the season. Bucs quarterback Baker Mayfield said nothing Evans does surprises him and he’s glad Evans is his teammate.
“It’s amazing to have a safety blanket like Mike,” Mayfield said. “Obviously Chris (Godwin) does a lot of special things as well, but Mike turns that switch. He gave us the spark.”
Evans had a 40-yard catch that set up Rachaad White’s 1-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. When Evans caught a short pass from Mayfield in the 3rd quarter and turned on the afterburners to hit paydirt, it put the Bucs up 14-10 and never trailed.
“I don’t know what more you can say; he’s been like this for ten years,” Bucs head coach Todd Bowles said. “Over 60 catches, ten years in a row, over 10,000 yards. You know he’s getting the ball, everybody’s trying to stop him, and he makes plays over and over. It’s a credit to him.”
With the win the Bucs (5-7) are one game behind the Atlanta Falcons (6-6) and tied with the New Orleans Saints for second place in the NFC South.
Atlanta beat the NY Jets Sunday, while the Saints (5-7) lost to the Detroit Lions. Tam[a Bay plays at Atlanta next Sunday.
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