Plusses and minuses
Winning the turnover battle is usually a key to winning football games, but it hasn’t worked out that way this season for either the Buccaneers or their opponent this week, the St. Louis Rams. The Bucs have a plus-11 turnover ratio and the Rams have a plus-10 mark, but they are two of only three teams (Buffalo at plus-1 is the other) that have losing records despite having a positive turnover ratio.
By the numbers
In his first 28 games as a pro, Bucs LB Lavonte David has recorded 265 tackles, eight sacks, 26 run stuffs and six interceptions. That’s 70 tackles, seven sacks, 14.5 run stuffs and five interceptions more than Bucs 2014 Hall of Fame candidate Derrick Brooks recorded in his first 28 games as a pro.
Did you know?
Bucs KR/PR Eric Page ranks 10th in the league in both kick return average (25.2 yards) and punt return average (10.9). Page’s kick return average is the fifth-best in the NFC.
Quote of the day
“They’re not making a lot of mistakes, they’re not giving up a lot of big plays and they can put good quick pressure on the passer, which makes them a challenge to attack.’’
- Rams coach Jeff Fisher on the Bucs defense
For the Bucs, LG Carl Nicks (foot) and DE Da’Quan Bowers (knee) did not practice Thursday; S Mark Barron (hamstring), WR Vincent Jackson (hamstring) and RG Davin Joseph (knee) were limited; NT Akeem Spence (wrist) and LB Lavonte David (hamstring) participated fully.
For the Rams, WR Tayvon Austin (ankle) and RB Daryl Richardson (thigh) did not practice.
Sunday: at St Louis, 1 p.m.
Dec. 29: at New Orleans, 1 p.m.