for this game

Buccaneers capitalize on mistakes by Redskins

Nov 25, 2007 - 11:51 PM TAMPA, Florida (Ticker) -- Christmas came early for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The Washington Redskins committed six turnovers to gift-wrap a 19-13 victory for the Buccaneers, who maintained a two-game lead in the NFC South Division.

Even though the Bucs (7-4) played more than three quarters without quarterback Jeff Garcia, who suffered a bruised back on the first play, their defense did more than enough to secure their fifth win in six home games.

Washington (7-4) lost four fumbles, including on its first two possessions, and Jason Campbell tossed two critical fourth-quarter interceptions before a crowd of 65,596 at Raymond James Stadium.

"Our defense made a lot of plays," Tampa Bay coach Jon Gruden said. "Obviously we struggled offensively with the three or four possessions we had in the second half."

Indeed, the Buccaneers did not have a first down, going three-and-out on four consecutive possessions and gaining 16 yards.

The Redskins, who trailed, 19-3, at halftime, were down by only 19-13 in the final five minutes with two opportunities to rally for the win. However, Ronde Barber intercepted Campbell at Washington's 31 with 3:40 remaining.

"From a Redskins standpoint this was a real, real big, big game for us," coach Joe Gibbs said. "I know it was for both sides. But to start the game off like that is hard to explain, but you're not going to be a real good football team if you turn the ball over like that."

It was Barber's 32nd career interception, setting a franchise record.

"When you look at the stats at the end of the day, they had 300 some yards in the second half," Barber said. "This is something we will look at and not be too happy about, but the way we ended it and the way we finished, we always talk about finishing football games."

Washington had one last chance for the win, taking over at its 7-yard line with 3:05 remaining and drove to Tampa Bay's 16, but Campbell was intercepted by Brian Kelly in the end zone with 17 seconds remaining.

"Somebody has to step us and make a play, so we can finish, that is just what it is," Redskins wide receiver Keenan McCardell said. "You just have to say, 'I am going to be that guy to make a play, to help us finish games out.'"

The Bucs came up with plays both times - both Ronde Barber and Brian Kelly had a big play for them."

Campbell finished 30-of-49 for 301 yards, including a 39-yard touchdown to Chris Cooley and two interceptions.

"The interceptions were tough," Campbell said. "I was just trying to take some shots in the end zone. We just have to not turn the ball over as a team."

On the first play from scrimmage, Garcia injured his back scrambling for a one-yard gain. He did not return until there was 11:13 remaining in the fourth quarter.

"I am sore right now," Garcia said. "It was a painful day, but one that we can fortunately smile about with the outcome of the game. I just took a shot in the lower back, right between the rib cage and the hip bone, almost like a kidney shot, and it was pretty deep."

Garcia was replaced by Brad Gradkowski, who was 9-for-19 for 106 yards.

Tampa Bay scored 19 first-half points despite not having one scoring drive longer than 35 yards.

The Redskins fumbled on their first two drives, with safety Tanard Jackson recovering both fumbles at Washington's 19.

On the Redskins' first play from scrimmage, wide receiver Santana Moss was stripped by Phillip Buchanon. Jackson's nine-yard fumble return set up Earnest Graham's 1-yard TD run.

On Washington's next possession, Clinton Portis' fumble set up Matt Bryant's 35-yard field goal.

The Redskins also fumbled on consecutive possession of the second quarter in their territory, but the Bucs couldn't make a first down and settled for field goals of 27 and 48 yards from Bryant.