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Buccaneers blow lead, Bengals win and take control of AFC North

Jerick McKinnon reflects back on a conversation with Patrick Mahomes and JuJu Smith-Schuster prior to his game-winner against the Texans in OT to clinch the Chiefs' playoff spot.

In a matchup of two division leaders today in Tampa, the Buccaneers looked like contenders for a half -- but the Bengals looked like contenders when it mattered.

The Buccaneers jumped out to a 17-0 lead in the first half, only to see the Bengals score 34 unanswered points and win.

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow completed 27 of 39 passes for 200 yards, with four touchdowns and one interception. It wasn’t one of Burrow’s best games, but after the sluggish start he took advantage of a lot of short fields to engineer scoring drive after scoring drive in the second half.

Those short fields came thanks to some awful mistakes by the Buccaneers, including two Tom Brady interceptions, two Brady lost fumbles, and a horrendous fake punt when the Bucs snapped the ball directly to running back Giovani Bernard, who didn’t appear to have any idea they had called a fake.

With the win, the Bengals are now 10-4 and in sole possession of first place in the AFC North. The Bucs fall to 6-8 but remain in first place in the terrible NFC South. These are both playoff teams, but only one looks like a good team.