Battle of the Bays Goes to Tampa on Late Kick
Donald Igwebuike kicked a 28-yard field goal on the final play to give Tampa Bay a 13-10 victory over Green Bay and end the Buccaneers’ 9-game losing streak.
Quarterback Vinny Testaverde drove Tampa Bay 56 yards to set up Igwebuike’s second field goal, the first coming on a 53-yarder with 1:40 left in the first half. The Buccaneers (1-1) began the winning march at their own 34 with 4:43 remaining after Green Bay’s Max Zendejas missed wide to the right on a 52-yard field goal try.
“We’ve been on a long downslide and we needed to get the win,” Igwebuike said. “I wanted us to get a touchdown on the last drive but they left it up to me.”
Testaverde kept the drive alive with a 6-yard pass to Jeff Smith on third down and a 22-yarder to Bruce Hill that carried Tampa Bay to the Packer 22.
Testaverde then ran for 15 yards to the 7. Two running plays gained 3 yards and, after Testaverde was thrown for a six-yard loss on third down, Igwebuike hit the game-winner.
“It’s about time,” Testaverde said after the Buccaneers’ first victory since beating the Packers Nov. 1, 1987, at Milwaukee.
“We’ll enjoy this one tonight. As long as we don’t make mistakes or big turnovers, we can play with anybody. It’s about time they (the mistakes) happened to the other team instead of us.”
The Packers, who have not won a non-strike game at Lambeau Field since Dec. 1, 1985, when they beat Tampa Bay, were booed loudly as they left the field.
Tampa Bay (1-1) rallied from a 10-0 first-quarter deficit, which included a career-long 50 yarder by Zendejas, to tie the game at halftime. Seven plays after Chris Washington recovered a fumble by Brent Fullwood at the Packer 49, Lars Tate went in from 2 yards out. Later, Igwebuike, who has six career field goals of over 50 yards and missed a 58-yarder on the final play of the half, connected from 53.
Packer quarterback Randy Wright completed all 13 of his second-half passes, finishing with 22 of 27 for 181 yards, but could not get the Packers in the end zone in the final three quarters.
Green Bay is 0-2.