NFL News & Analysis

NFL Week 15 PFF ReFocused: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38, Detroit Lions 17

Detroit, MI, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) passes the ball during the first quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Despite Mike Evans missing the game to injury and Chris Godwin getting hurt partway through, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense didn't really miss a beat Sunday, routing the Detroit Lions 38-17.

PFF's ReFocused series features immediate takeaways from the two analysts who graded the game live. The two offer a detailed breakdown of the game's most notable performances before the grades and advanced stats are reviewed and finalized by Senior Analysts.

All of PFF's grades and advanced stats from this game and the other games played this week will be finalized and made available to ELITE subscribers within 24 hours of the final whistle. ELITE subscribers can view player grades, advanced statistics, positional snap counts and more in Premium Stats.

PFF's ELITE subscribers can also preview NFL and NCAA games in PFF Greenline, an online dashboard with projections for the spread, totals and moneyline.

Final Score

Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38, Detroit Lions 17

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jameis Winston started early with an interception but after that he settled down and took apart the Lions defense without giving up another chance for an interception. Winston threw for more than 400 yards (over 200 in the first quarter alone) as the Bucs were up 21-3 by halftime.

Once the Bucs lost starting WR Mike Evans, it was unknown how the other receivers would step up. As it turned out, Chris Godwin, Breshad Perriman and Scotty Miller all gave the Lions defense issues throughout Sunday's game. Both Perriman and Miller scored a TD (three for Perriman), with Godwin and Perriman both topping 100 yards as the receivers were able to create separation to give Winston easy throws.

Lavonte David had a great game, especially in coverage. David was sound with his tackling, limiting the damage when Detroit checked down, and he made a nice play to intercept a pass on a play that was called back due to an offsides.

Jamel Dean also had a nice game in coverage, breaking up a couple of passes on the afternoon and nearly coming down with what could have been a pick-six himself at the start of the second quarter, though he wasn't able to hang onto the interception.

Detroit Lions

To say David Blough struggled this week would be putting things lightly. Blough couldn't get the Lions offense moving at all early on, and then accuracy issues plagued him when he tried to get more aggressive downfield. Blough did ultimately connect on a few deep passes (including a beautiful ball down the right sideline to Danny Amendola) but those throws weren't nearly as common as off-target ones.

Danny Amendola was Detroit's most productive offensive player in Week 15. He was Blough's most targeted receiver — seeing twice as many targets as anyone else — and was one of the few players for the Lions who was able to keep the chains moving.

The Lions secondary struggled in coverage over the first half, giving up 300 yards before haltime with a couple of issues in coverage, allowing some deep completions. Over the second half the defense tightened up and gave the Lions a chance to come back into the game until an interception returned for a touchdown put them two scores down.

Trey Flowers was the most productive pass-rusher for the Lions on a defense that was unable to get consistent pressure on Winston. Overall, the unit gave too much time for the Bucs offense to be able to take the Lions' back end apart.

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