It is hard for a team to build momentum without a winning streak, and the Bucs are finally on one. Despite playing without Warren Sapp, the defense shut down the Texans on the ground and through the air. Thomas Jones carried the offense and the ball, ending up with 151 total yards. The Bucs must play two more games with the intensity they brought into Sunday to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.

Texans' wide receiver Andre Johnson dropped three balls Sunday afternoon. This has been happening to opposing receivers lately. Johnson joins a dubious list that Amani Toomer started on Monday Night Football and Joe Horn continued two weeks later. These men have all dropped passes that would have been sure touchdowns if caught. The Buccaneers have won every game that an opposing player has made this costly mistake. Perhaps they are not used to being so wide open and are caught off guard. No matter what the reason, if the drops keep coming the Bucs will keep winning.

Jones' workhorse-like 34 carries kept the defense rested, and the chains moving. Brad Johnson should be grateful for this because he had another bad game. He was off target all day as he consistently over threw his receivers. He escaped without throwing a pick and was able to spread the ball around to six different receivers. Fans could care less how Johnson throws the ball if the Bucs win, but it seems to have been a long time since he had a good game, despite respectable numbers.

Charles Lee continues to prove why he should have been on the roster opening day. He has developed into one of the league's most dangerous run after catch receivers. His 72 yard catch and run accounted for the bulk of his 95 yards receiving. Keenan McCardell hauled in five balls for 59 yards. His first catch, a 14 yarder, put him over a thousand for the year. After the game, McCardell was more excited about the win than his personal accomplishment – a refreshing change that should be appreciated in the locker room.

The Bucs' front four applied constant pressure, flushing rookie quarterback Dave Ragone out of the pocket all afternoon. The team finished with five sacks, none off which belonged to Simeon Rice. Rice was drawing special attention with Sapp out of the line up, but that did not stop him from getting in Ragone's face to force some quick throws. Greg Spires had two sacks and helped the front four shut down rookie running back Domanick Davis, who was held to 54 yards rushing on the day.

The best performance of the game belonged to the Buccaneers' offensive line. They opened holes for Jones and did not allow a single sack of Brad Johnson. The Bucs had only three penalties against Houston, a welcome change from the norm. The line deserves the game ball in this one, hopefully they can keep up the good work.

On a sour note, kicker Martin Gramatica came one step closer to losing his job when he missed another field goal. In the Bucs' two game winning streak Gramatica has missed field goals that did not come back to haunt the team. This cannot continue if the Bucs want to finish the season at 9-7.

The Bucs need losses from Seattle, New Orleans and Green Bay to make it to the dance. Despite the turmoil off the field, the Bucs are still fighting. Perhaps the heart of a champion still beats in the team's collective chest.

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