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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers playoff picture is clear: they can clinch the NFC South by beating the Carolina Panthers next week.
It was Tom Brady’s first Christmas Day game of his career. It was a bit of a slog early on, but the Buccaneers and Cardinals heated up in the 4th quarter and went to overtime locked at 16.
They certainly gave the Buccaneers all they could handle, but a solid drive in overtime set up a Ryan Succop game-winning field goal to give his team a 19-16 win.
The Cardinals entered the game at 4-10, playing for nothing more than the chance to make Brady and Co.’s playoff bid all the more frustrating.
They certainly did their best to do just that.
Brady found Cardinals cornerback Marco Wilson instead of one of his own receivers twice.
The first happened in the second quarter as TB12 aired one out to Mike Evans only to hit Wilson.
The former Gator had Brady’s number and picked off a second pass when Brady targeted Evans once again later in the game.
It took him a while, but eventually, Brady figured out the Cardinals’ defense just enough to leave the desert with a victory.
Now, The Buccaneers look ahead to next week. They can lock up the NFC South by beating the Panthers at home.
That division has been an absolute grease fire this season. Who could’ve seen the division championship hinging on a Week 17 Bucs-Panthers game even a few weeks ago?
Well, that’s where we’re headed.
Follow on Twitter: @Matt_Reigle