Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans acknowledged that the team's goal was to go out and dominate the Detroit Lions as they believed they were the big favorites to win the game. The Buccaneers, who needed a win to clinch a playoff berth, successfully did their task as they dominated the Lions 47-7 to end their 13-year playoff drought.
"The goal was to dominate. They were a depleted team. There were no coaches," Evans said, per ESPN. "We did want to come out and dominate and we did that. "We've been scratching and clawing every single year to try to make the tournament.
It's been seven years for me, nine for Lavonte [David] and eight for Will Gholston. It's been a journey, but we are happy we finally accomplished it and that's just where it starts. We want to go as far as we can."
Evans had a great performance
Evans made 10 catches on 12 targets and that was enough for 181 yards and two touchdowns.
The Buccaneers led 34-0 at halftime so head coach Bruce Arians pulled starting quarterback Tom Brady out of the game for backup quarterback Blaine Gabbert. "We knew -- especially [against] this team -- Tom went against this defense for 20 years in New England [with] all the calls and everything.
He was very confident that we could get Mike the ball in this ballgame," Arians said. "Every time Blaine [Gabbert] had a chance, we were going to try to get Mike that record. I was hoping he'd get it today and we wouldn't have to play him next week, but next week will take care of itself.
I desperately want that to happen. Whatever he needs -- 50 [yards] or whatever he has left -- I'm sure Atlanta's not going to want to give it to him, so we'll have to find some creative ways to get it for him." The Buccaneers struggled early on in the season but now they stand at 10-5 and they have reached their first playoffs since 2007.
"I know at different times we haven't played the way we're capable of playing, and when we do play the way we're capable of playing, we're pretty tough to beat," Brady acknowledged. "We've gotta figure out how to do it more consistently in the best possible way.
We play another divisional opponent at home and I'm gonna be excited to get out there to play and see what we can accomplish."