Bucs survive Seahawks fightback to win first NFL game in Germany

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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers strengthened their grip on first place in the NFC South as they survived a fourth-quarter fightback from the Seattle Seahawks to prevail 21-16 in Munich.

Tampa Bay went into the NFL's first regular-season game in Germany having got back on track with a last-gasp 16-13 win over the Los Angeles Rams and on top in their division despite an underwhelming 4-5 record.

For three-and-a-half quarters, there was little sub-par about the Buccaneers' performance at the Allianz Arena, where they led 21-3 with under nine minutes remaining.

Geno Smith threw touchdowns to Tyler Lockett and Marquise Goodwin to cut their advantage to 21-16, but Tom Brady delivered a clock-killing final drive to seal the game for the Bucs, who improve to 5-5, a game ahead of the 4-6 Atlanta Falcons with a tie-breaking head-to-head win in the NFC South. The Seahawks drop to 6-4.

After a scoreless first quarter, the Bucs took the lead at the end of a 13-play drive, Brady connecting over the middle with Julio Jones, who galloped into the endzone for a 31-yard touchdown.

While Smith and the Seahawks' offense continued to struggle, Brady looked increasingly comfortable and led another 13-play drive that was capped by a Leonard Fournette rushing touchdown to put Tampa Bay up 14-0.

Seattle responded in the third quarter with a 55-yard field goal but did not look like stopping the Bucs' offense until a remarkable trick play saw Fournette intercepted by Tariq Woolen while trying to throw to Brady.

But Smith fumbled in the red zone on the subsequent drive and Brady's four-yard touchdown pass to Chris Godwin seemingly put the game beyond doubt.

Smith connected with Lockett to give Seattle hope that was furthered by Goodwin's diving touchdown grab after a Cody Barton interception.

However, the Bucs gained three first downs on the final drive to end any prospect of a turnaround in Bavaria.