Originally written on The Bay Cave  |  Last updated 11/18/14

The Bucs defense found themselves up against the wall for the majority of the game. After some key plays on defense and special teams, Tampa Bay sent the Chargers back to San Diego with a 34-24 loss on Sunday. Philip Rivers and the Chargers struck first just three plays into the game. A 10-yard pass to Danario Alexander turned into an 80-yard catch and run when he broke free from Bucs’ cornerback Leonard Johnson tackle where Alexander’s knee never hit the ground. On the ensuing Buccaneers’ possession, a Josh Freeman touchdown pass from three yards out to tight end Dallas Clark tied the game 7-7. The touchdown was set up by a dump off to Doug Martin that he turned into a 42 yard reception. San Diego marched right back down the field where Rivers connected with tight end Antonio Gates, putting the Chargers back on top 14-7. A Connor Barth field goal would cut the deficit to 14-10 in the second quarter. But the Bucs would get the lead when linebacker Dekoda Watson blocked a Chargers punt attempt which allowed special teams captain Adam Hayward to scoop it up and take it in for the go ahead touchdown. The Chargers would take a 21-17 lead into the half after an eight minute touchdown drive left the Bucs with barely any time remaining in the second quarter. In the third quarter, Josh Freeman connected with wide receiver Tiquan Underwood for a 15-yard touchdown to put the Bucs ahead 24-21. The Bucs would add another touchdown when undrafted rookie Leonard Johnson intercepted a pass from Rivers that was thrown right to him and took it 83-yards for the touchdown. That is Johnson’s third interception in the last three games. With the score 31-24 with under four minutes left, Philip Rivers would be sacked by Bucs’ defensive end Daniel Te’o-Nesheim. On the following play, the Tampa Bay defensive front pressured Rivers into another interception this time by LeQuan Lewis. Tampa Bay would go on to kick a field goal with just over a minute left to seal the game 34-24. Scary situation in the third quarter for Bucs linebacker Quincy Black made a helmet to helmet hit on Chargers running back Ryan Matthews. Black would remain on the ground motionless to later be carted off on a stretcher. Coach Schiano said after the game that Black would be fine. The team will further evaluate him on Monday. NOTES Josh Freeman finished the game 14-20 for 210 yards, two touchdowns and a passer rating of 137.5. Doug Martin had 119 total yards (68 rushing, 51 receiving). He has 100+ total yards in the last five games. The Bucs defense recorded two sacks (Mason Foster, Daniel Te’o-Nesheim) and two interceptions (Leonard Johnson, LeQuan Lewis). Tampa Bay is 11-3 when Freeman has a passer rating of 100+. With his two touchdown passes Sunday, he has now gone 12 straight games with at least one touchdown pass dating back to last season.   The post Defense, special teams carry Bucs in win over San Diego appeared first on The Bay Cave.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Cormier tells Jones to get his s-- together

Fans holding 'Free Tom Brady Rally' at Gillette Stadium

Josh Hamilton to be activated by Rangers

WATCH: Top CB recruit makes insane catch doing backflip

Biggest surprises of the MLB season

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Marcus Mariota leads NFL in jersey sales for May

Report: Scott Skiles frontrunner for Magic coaching job

Shanahan: injuries are not why Robert Griffin III struggles

Kyle Korver ruled out for remainder of playoffs

Randy Moss attends cancer survivor's graduation

Roger Staubach shares thoughts on Greg Hardy

Warriors crush Rockets in Houston to take 3-0 series lead

WATCH: D'Angelo Russell whiffs on horrible golf swing

Brian Matusz ejected for having foreign substance on arm

PHOTO: Don Cherry wears wild suit even for his taste

PHOTOS: Gigantic sinkhole at Jack Nicklaus golf course

WATCH: Memphis player catches defense sleeping, scores

WATCH: Astros turn around-the-horn triple play

French Open Women's preview: Who will make the quarters?

WATCH: Bryan Price gets ejected before game starts

WATCH: Vin Scully narrates fan's marriage proposal

WATCH: Harper, Matt Williams have special handshake

The Yankees are succeeding despite the numbers

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Eight biggest surprises of the MLB season

Bryan Price ejected before first pitch

Vin Scully narrates marriage proposal

Pats fan's obituary defends Brady

Marlins players skip own charity event

John Wall tells All-NBA Team voters to ‘keep sleeping’

Jim Kelly: No doubt Tom Brady cheated

Post-combine NBA Draft big board: Top 30

Ex-players sue NFL for conspiring to push painkillers

Astros surprising, but can get better with Correa

Here come the Giants

Aaron Hernandez got new tattoo in prison

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.