(CTN News) – The Eagles remained unbeaten on Monday night with a 25-11 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as quarterback Jalen Hurts threw for a touchdown, ran for another and led the team on a game-ending drive that lasted more than nine minutes.
In the first time since 1992-93, the defending NFC champions are off to a 3-0 start in consecutive seasons for the first time since they won their first eight games a year ago.
Over the course of his last 21 regular-season games, Hurts has gone 20-1. During the first half, he completed a 34-yard TD pass to Olamide Zaccheaus to give Philadelphia a 13-3 lead at halftime. In the second half, he scored on a 1-yard run to give the Eagles a 17-point lead.
The Eagles were leading 25-3 when Baker Mayfield’s 1-yard touchdown pass to Mike Evans finally got the Buccaneers into the end zone on the Eagles’ final play of the game.
There was a 2-point conversion that cut Philadelphia’s lead to 14 with 9:22 remaining in the game, but Hurts and the Eagles never let Tampa Bay get the ball back.
Hurts completed four of five passes on the game’s final drive and ran for a first down.
In their first loss since Mayfield took over at quarterback, the Buccaneers (2-1) turned the ball over twice after playing turnover-free against Minnesota and Chicago. It was a similar story for the Buccaneers’ usually reliable defense, which surrendered 201 rushing yards.
Following his career-high running of 175 yards a week ago, D’Andre Swift ran for 130 yards on 16 attempts for Philadelphia.
During the game, Hurts completed 23 of 37 passes for 277 yards and two interceptions, while Brown had nine receptions for 131 yards for the Eagles, who remain unbeaten along with Miami and San Francisco in the NFL.
A total of 15 of 25 passes were completed by Mayfield for 146 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. As a result of Evans’ five receptions, he now has 700 career receptions.
An auspicious sign
A total of 12 of the past 14 teams to start the season 3-0 have gone on to reach the playoffs.
CEREMONY AT HALF TIME
Ronde Barber’s 92-yard interception return for a touchdown in the 2002 NFC championship game in Philadelphia is perhaps the most memorable play in the history of the Tampa Bay franchise.
At halftime on Monday night, the former Buccaneers player received his Hall of Fame Ring of Excellence after being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in August.
The Eagles were without wide receiver Quez Watkins (hamstring) and running back Boston Scott (concussion). In the first quarter, defensive tackle Justin Evans (neck) was forced to leave the game.
The Buccaneers were without CB Carlton Davis III (toe) and DL Calijah Kancey following their absences against Chicago last week.
THE NEXT STEP
On Sunday, the Philadelphia Eagles will face their NFC East rival Washington at home.
On Sunday, the Buccaneers play at their NFC South rival, the New Orleans Saints.