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Buccaneers Vs. Giants 2012: Bucs Nation Frustrated By Loss, But Sees Encouraging Signs

Leading the defending Super Bowl champions by 11 points heading into the fourth quarter proved not enough of a cushion for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who ended up losing to the New York Giants, 41-34, a result that had fans and bloggers trying to decide what to take from the up-and-down result.

For three quarters, the Buccaneers looked every bit the reinvigorated attack they had been advertised to be after Week 1, and the guys over at Bucs Nation were happy with the performance up to that point.

The first three quarters were a near-perfect demonstration of Buc Ball. The Bucs allowed the Giants to go down the field, but limited them to three field goals in the red zone, allowing just one touchdown over the first three quarters. They forced three turnovers, and didn't give the ball away themselves.

But it unraveled for the Buccaneers in the fourth quarter, as the Giants stormed back during a quarter that saw a combined 32 points scored, raising questions about the stamina of the Bucs defense.

Ultimately, Eli Manning threw for 510 yards on 51 attempts, while Hakeem Nicks caught 10 passes for 199 yards and a touchdown and Victor Cruz added 11 passes for 179 yards and a touchdown. Nicks repeatedly abused Aqib Talib, who had a poor game with a few good pass defenses in between, while Cruz victimized everyone he could find.

For more Bucs coverage, check out Bucs Nation.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.