October 14, 2018 / 8:48 PM / a month ago

Ryan, Falcons hold off Winston, Bucs late

The Atlanta Falcons overcame four touchdown passes by Jameis Winston in his first start of the season and held on to defeat the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-29 on Sunday, snapping a three-game losing streak.

Matt Bryant kicked a 57-yard field goal for the Falcons (2-4) with 70 seconds left while hurting his leg, and a desperation lateral by the Bucs (2-3) went out of bounds inside the 10-yard line as time expired at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

Matt Ryan threw three touchdowns passes, including a 6-yarder to Tevin Coleman with 6:28 left, but Winston teamed with Peyton Barber on a 5-yard score with 3:47 remaining.

Winston, suspended for the first three games and the backup in Week 4, completed 30 of 41 passes for 395 yards. He was intercepted twice.

Ryan didn’t have a turnover and was 31 of 41 for 354 yards. Julio Jones went without a touchdown for the 11th straight game, but had 10 catches for 143 yards.

Ryan, who started 12 for 12, completed 20 of 24 passes for 240 yards in the first half, leading the Falcons to touchdowns on their first three possessions and then to a 45-yard field goal by Bryant with one second left for a 24-13 lead at intermission.

Ryan had scoring passes of 35 yards to Mohamed Sanu and 9 yards to Austin Hooper, tying Joe Montana for No. 16 all-time with 273 multi-TD games, and rookie Ito Smith ran it in from 14 yards.

The Bucs scored on their first and last possessions of the first half, with Winston hitting Cameron Brate for 15 yards and then O.J. Howard from 10 yards out with 26 seconds left in the half.

Chandler Cantanzaro missed the PAT after the Tampa Bay’s first TD, but kicked a 35-yard field goal late in the third quarter. The Bucs missed tying the game when Winston’s two-point pass was incomplete after he had hit Chris Godwin for a 9-yard TD early in the fourth.

Falcons first-round draft choice Calvin Ridley, who has six touchdowns, left the game with an ankle injury after catching three passes for 47 yards in the first quarter, and Sanu was sidelined late in the third quarter because of a hip injury.

The Bucs lost six-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle Gerald McCoy to a calf injury in the fourth quarter.

—Field Level Media

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