Monday, November 15, 2010

Week 10 Bucs Post (vs. Carolina, W 31 - 16) (Also, I was there...)

So... After about 13 years of being a die-hard Bucs fan, I finally made it down to Raymond James for a game. It was, in a word, awesome. Here is photographic evidence that I (or, at least, the top of my head in my complimentary visor) was there:
Here's the view of the logo from my seat:
And the famous pirate ship (which was able to blast its very loud cannons many times thanks to the offense):
The flag-unfurling team worked like a well-oiled machine getting the team flag on the field for player introductions:
And Old Man Barber was front and center for every offensive player that was introduced. Here he is with Freeman... aka The Franchise:
Enough of the photos I took with my "bad" camera (the "good" one is too nice to bring to places where it may get lost/stolen...). I had a fantastic time at the game. The only complaint I have about Raymond James is that they don't seem to understand that fans want to see replays on the big screen after impressive/controversial plays/calls rather than being shown yet again that, yes, the cheerleaders are very pretty. Qwest Field definitely has Raymond James beat on that count. Otherwise, though, it was a fantastic experience. Parking was reasonably priced, the staff were super-friendly and helpful, and I can't wait to go back... On to the game. All four of the Bucs' touchdowns were rather impressive. The first came from a beautiful Arrelious Benn play. Behold the extra effort (from two angles!):
I'll take this moment to mention that Freeman, again, was fantastic. It's been SO long since Tampa had a quarterback they could trust to come through when it counted. Brad Johnson was reliable in terms of not turning the ball over (which was all we needed with that amazing defense), but Freeman can come through for us even when defense and special teams put him in a bad situation. Love.
The second amazing touchdown came from one of the team's break-out rookies, LaGarrette Blount (shown here in two consecutive shots). Dude is athletic.
Look at that stretch with the ball to just cross the goal line while tumbling through the air! It was enough to make me forgive him for that costly fumble... The third spectacular touchdown (which I was unable to find an in-progress picture of) came, quite surprisingly, from Kellen Winslow. With two men on him, one of whom was committing a penalty, Winslow went up and caught the damn ball. If he wasn't so scared of getting hit, I would really like that guy. Freeman definitely liked him after that play...
The boisterous fan next to me kept yelling for Caddy to get his broken-kneed self off of the field, so when the game-clinching touchdown came from a 45-yard run by Mr. Williams, I could not help but talk a little smack. Even if one of Caddy's most valuable skills this year has been pass protection (which should not be taken lightly), dude can still break off a nice run when it matters.
I won't talk about the inexcusable number of penalties (I believe it was 10 penalties for 80 yards...) or the way special teams (especially Michael Spurlock) had an uncharacteristically bad day. I'm just going to focus on how much fun it was to be at this game and to watch the big plays from our offense. A record of 6-3 is pretty impressive coming off of 3-13, and I love seeing so much young talent on the field. Bring on the Niners!

No comments: