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Eagles Run Over By Martin, Winston In 45-17 Defeat

Bob Levey/Getty Images

Bob Levey/Getty Images


It happened just before Thanksgiving in 2013 when Mike Glennon quarterbacked a team coached by Greg Schiano to a 24-21 victory over the Lions. The streak came to a resounding end on Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia.

Jameis Winston tied a rookie record by throwing five touchdown passes, Doug Martin ran 27 times for 235 yards and the Bucs rolled to a 45-17 victory over the Eagles. Beyond snapping their run without consecutive wins, the victory also left the Bucs with a 5-5 record and in position to make a run at a Wild Card spot over the final six weeks of the regular season.

They’ll pick up that quest in Indianapolis next Sunday and they should have a good chance of doing it if the offense can keep clicking the way they did this week. Winston was 19-of-29 for 246 yards and hit five different receivers for his touchdowns as Vincent Jackson’s return after three games on the sideline with a knee injury seemed to open things up for a passing game that hadn’t produced a touchdown since Week Eight.

That kind of production through the air and on the ground — 521 yards in total — doesn’t look good for the Eagles defense and little looked good for the home team on either side of the ball after their first drive ended with a Josh Huff touchdown catch. They didn’t seem to have any answer for the Tampa offense, which held the ball for nearly 10 minutes to open the first half and then ate another five minutes to set up a field goal after Mark Sanchez’s second interception of the day.

Sanchez threw another late in the fourth quarter that Lavonte David returned for the final Buccaneers points of the afternoon and gave the remaining Eagles fans another chance to shower their team with some well-earned boos. At 4-6, the Eagles aren’t dead in the NFC East mathematically but it is hard to imagine that anyone who has watched this team this year thinks they can be consistent enough in any phase of the game to pull that off.

That opener about consecutive wins should cover consistency on the Tampa end, but it’s clear that looking backward with this team isn’t particularly useful because Winston has clearly changed the formula for the Buccaneers. It certainly helps that Jackson and Martin are healthy, but the rookie’s progression is the biggest reason for optimism about what the rest of this season may hold as well as the ability to shrug shoulders if it doesn’t work out because there’s actual reason to believe that next year will be better.

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