The Bucs, meanwhile, opened as a 4-point home underdog but the line was bet up almost three points and now the Falcons are -6.5. This latest win for the Falcons eliminates the Green Bay Packers from playoff contention. Jones had 12 receptions for 253 yards and two touchdowns against the Buccaneers in a 34-20 Falcons win on November 26.
Tampa Bay, meanwhile, has nothing to play for but pride, so they will be looking to play the role of spoiler in primetime.
The Bucs (4-10), who entered the game without three injured defensive starters, had six more players ruled out after getting hurt Monday night.
The last time these teams squared off, Ryan Fitzpatrick was under center for the Buccaneers. Thankfully for the Bucs, the Falcons are tied with the Cleveland Browns for last in the National Football League in takeaways with only 11 on the 2017 season giving Atlanta a -5 differential.
The additions of DeSean Jackson and O.J. Howard, to go along with Pro Bowler Mike Evans and rising tight end Cameron Brate, were supposed to transcend the Tampa Bay passing game from good to great, but that has yet to really materialize. The Falcons will need that type of balance to knock off the Saints (10-4) and Panthers (10-4) over the next two weeks. And, well, the Falcons are way better than Tampa Bay.
Egypt's Mohamed Salah named African Footballer of the Year 2017
Salah, 25 is also in the race for the African Player of the Year award to be awarded by the African Football Confederation (CAF) on January 4 in Accra, Ghana.
After a promising 9-7 campaign in his first season as coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dirk Koetter's future is already in doubt thanks to a disappointing 4-9 mark so far this season. Even with McCoy and David in the lineup, Tampa Bay was giving up 113.2 rushing yards (18th in the NFL) and one rushing touchdown per game on average.
The Falcons led 17-7 at halftime, pulling away with a 10-point second quarter.
Matt Ryan threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Justin Hardy; Levine Toilolo recovered a fumble in the end zone; and Matt Bryant kicked a 57-yard field goal. The Buccaneers were without their three stars on that side of the ball in defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, linebacker Lavonte David and cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III.
While the Detroit game was certainly upsetting from a turnover perspective, it also left the team devastated by key injuries.
Martin hasn't been the same running back since last season.