Panthers watch playoff dreams slip away in 30-24 loss to Buccaneers
A spot in the NFC Wildcard Playoffs was on the line in Tampa Bay at Raymond James Stadium. The Panthers struck first when Sam Darnold hit tight end Tommy Tremble from 17 yards out capping a 6 play 75 yard drive and it was 7-0 Carolina.
In the 2nd quarter Darnold found DJ Moore on a a 24 yard TD completion that took 8 plays and 57 yards in 4:09 seconds for a 14-0 seconds for a 14-0 lead.
Tom Brady answered back when he went up top to Mike Evans for a big 63 yard touchdown play. Then Ryan Succop hit a 22 yard field goal right before the half and they went into the locker room trailing the Panthers 14-10.
In the third quarter Darnold connected with his playmaker DJ Moore down to the Buccaneers 31 yard line.
Then in the final quarter Darnold hits Shi Smith capping a 7 play 91 yard scoring drive. Carolina went up 21-10 with 14:50 left in the game.
Brady rallied back and found his favorite receiver Mike Evans on a 3 play 75 yard drive that made it a five point game and Brady kept pouring it on. An 8 play 92 yard drive resulted in another Evans TD reception and the Bucs first lead of the game and they went on to win it 30-24 knocking the Panthers out of playoff contention. Interim head coach Steve Wilks was visibly upset by the loss. "You can't win against a quarterback like that turning the ball over," Wilks said in his postgame press conference.