Buffalo 30, Tampa Bay 27
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, October 22, 2017
Where: New Era Field, Orchard Park, New York
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- The Buffalo Bills made mistakes in the fourth quarter on Sunday. But they redeemed themselves with game-saving plays.
LeSean McCoy scored a late touchdown after losing a fumble and rookie cornerback Tre'Davious White forced a fumble that led to the winning field goal after giving up a go-ahead touchdown in the Bills' 30-27 comeback victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
McCoy tallied 122 yards (91 rushing, 31 receiving) and two touchdowns and Tyrod Taylor passed for a season-high 268 yards and a touchdown as the Bills (4-2) improved to 3-0 at home for the first time in six seasons.
Stephen Hauschka made three field goals, including the game-winner from 30 yards with 14 seconds remaining. Earlier in the game, Hauschka tied an NFL record by making his 12th consecutive field goal of at least 50 yards.
Deonte Thompson caught four passes for 107 yards. Thompson signed with the Bills on Wednesday after he spent the first five weeks of the season with the Chicago Bears.
"There is a lot of heart on this football team," Bills head coach Sean McDermott said. "To me, that really personifies this city. Heart, toughness, blue-collar. And the fans really stuck with us all day."
The two teams exchanged the lead twice in the fourth quarter and the Bills scored 10 points in the final three minutes.
Jameis Winston started at quarterback for the Buccaneers after being listed as questionable with a shoulder injury even though it was announced Friday he would start. Winston was 32 of 44 passing for 384 yards and three touchdowns. But he fumbled twice, losing one, and threw an interception.
"We're fighting man, we're fighting," Winston said. "We've got it in us. We've just got to find a way to do it for four quarters, that's what this game is. Not just two, not just three, four."
The Buccaneers had a season-high 447 total yards. Rookie tight end O.J. Howard caught six passes for 98 yards and two touchdowns. Mike Evans had seven receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown.
But three turnovers were too much to overcome.
"It's disappointing," Howard said. "It really doesn't matter about stats and whatever. At the end of the day it's about the win. We had a lot of opportunities to win the game and we missed them. Unfortunately, the ball fell to their side today."
The Bills drove 65 yards in 46 seconds and McCoy's 7-yard touchdown run tied the game at 27 with 2:32 left to play. Thompson caught a 41-yard pass on the first play of the possession and Buccaneers cornerback Robert McClain was penalized for a helmet-to-helmet hit that gave the Bills the ball at the 16.
On the first play of Tampa Bay's next drive, White forced a fumble by wide receiver Adam Humphries and recovered the ball at the Buccaneers 33 to set up the winning field goal.
Winston had rolled out and thrown a strike to Evans, who dragged both of his feet while falling out of bounds for a 12-yard touchdown that put the Buccaneers in front 27-20 with 3:14 remaining.
White was in coverage on Evans' touchdown. In Buffalo's previous loss to Cincinnati two weeks ago, White gave up two long passes to A.J. Green, one for a touchdown.
"I almost cost us the game again," White said. "Gave up another touchdown. If it weren't for the offense we would have lost because of me again."
The scoring drive came after linebacker Lavonte David forced a McCoy fumble and recovered the ball at the Buccaneers 46.
"That can't happen," McCoy said. "That won't happen again. I have to do better. I have to play better and those type of plays, late in the game like that, I have to be better."
Tampa Bay tied the game at 20 less than a minute earlier when Winston rolled out to his right and threw back to an uncovered Howard along the left sideline for a 33-yard touchdown.
Hauschka's record-tying 52-yard field goal gave the Bills a 20-13 lead early in the fourth quarter.
Winston found Howard for a 7-yard touchdown that brought the Buccaneers within 17-13 midway through the third quarter. An unnecessary roughness penalty on Bills cornerback Leonard Johnson and a 32-yard pass to Doug Martin put Tampa Bay in scoring position.
Taylor threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to tight end Logan Thomas on the opening drive of the second half to put the Bills up 17-13.
McCoy scored his first touchdown of the season on a 1-yard run in the second quarter and Hauschka kicked a 25-yard field goal for the Bills, who led 10-6 at halftime.
Hauschka missed a 41-yard attempt after defensive end Ryan Davis stripped the ball from Winston and Leonard Johnson recovered the fumble near midfield. The Bills had another chance to score late in the first half when rookie linebacker Matt Milano intercepted Winston at the Tampa Bay 26 with 23 seconds remaining. But Buffalo mismanaged the clock and did not attempt a field goal.
"That was my fault," McDermott said. "It was all my fault."
The Buccaneers gained 132 yards on their first two drives, but came away with only two field goals (from 50 and 25 yards) by kicker Patrick Murray against the Bills' top-ranked red-zone defense.
NOTES: Bills K Stephen Hauschka, who spent the past six seasons in Seattle, matched a record held by Blair Walsh, Robbie Gould, Justin Tucker and Matt Prater. He also became the fourth active kicker to score a point in 100 consecutive games. ... Bills CB E.J. Gaines left the game in the third quarter with a hamstring injury and did not return. Gaines missed Buffalo's previous game with a groin injury. S Jordan Poyer was injured on the final play of the game, but McDermott had no update on the nature or severity of Poyer's injury. ... Buccaneers LB Kwon Alexander (hamstring) returned to the lineup after missing four games. ... WR Jordan Matthews (broken thumb) started for the Bills three weeks after getting injured. He wore a protective glove. ... Bills RG John Miller, a second-round draft pick in 2015, was inactive for the second straight game.
Top Game Performances
Team Stats Summary
Buffalo will play their next game at home against Oakland. The Bills have a W/L % of .500 after a win and 1.000 after a loss.
Tampa Bay will play their next game at home against Carolina. The Buccaneers have a W/L % of .000 after a win and .500 after a loss.