The Buccaneers are fighting for a playoff spot and the Falcons are playing for an interim head coach, but Atlanta has been the more impressive team through the first 30 minutes of action in Atlanta.
Matt Ryan threw a touchdown pass to cap a 6-for-6 opening drive and continued to pick the Bucs defense apart over the rest of the half. He went 22-of-28 for 236 yards and threw another touchdown pass in the second quarter to help the Falcons extend their lead to 14-0.
Tom Brady and the Tampa offense didn’t have anything close to that kind of success. Brady was sacked twice, the run game produced eight yards on five carries, and the Buccaneers didn’t put any points on the field during the first half of the game. The Falcons lead 17-0 as a result of that effort.
A loss by the Buccaneers would make the Saints the NFC South champions regardless of what happens in their game against the Chiefs later on Sunday. The Buccaneers will have to mount a pretty big rally to keep that from happening.