Purdy outplays Brady in 1st start as 49ers beat Bucs 35-7


San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy (13) celebrates after running for a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half. AP Photo/Jed Jacobsohn

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Brock Purdy threw two touchdown passes and ran for another score in his first career start and San Francisco’s vaunted defense spoiled Tom Brady’s homecoming in the Bay Area with a 35-7 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.

Purdy surpassing the NFL’s most accomplished quarterback was partially overshadowed by another key injury for the 49ers (9-4).

A week after losing quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a broken left foot that opened the door for Purdy to start, the Niners lost star receiver Deebo Samuel to an ankle injury that left him forced to be taken off the field in tears on a trolley.

  • Purdy outplays Brady in 1st start as 49ers beat Bucs 35-7

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That’s about the only thing that didn’t go well for the 49ers, who completely outscored Brady and the Bucs (6-7) to win their sixth straight game.

Purdy’s first start got off to a painful start when he was flattened on a blitz by Keanu Neal in the opener on a play that was deemed rough on the setter.

The final pick of the 2022 draft rose and led the Niners to one of five touchdowns on their first seven possessions of the game when Samuel scored on a 13-yard run.

Samuel was injured on a second quarter fumble in an emotional scene that saw dozens of his teammates take to the field to wish him luck before he was whisked away on a cart with his head in his hands .

San Francisco was already leading 21-0 by then, with Purdy scoring on a 2-yard run and a 27-yard TD pass to Christian McCaffrey.

He capped a near-perfect first half with a 32-yard TD pass to Brandon Aiyuk, joining Don Strock (1975) as the only players to throw at least two TD passes and run for another in the first half of their first career start, according to Sportradar.

Purdy was 16 for 21 for 185 yards and two touchdowns.

McCaffrey, who rushed for 119 yards, added a rushing touchdown with a 38-yard run after Brady was intercepted by Tashaun Gipson on the first drive of the third quarter.

Brady, who was playing only the second game on the road against his favorite team while growing up in nearby San Mateo, was intercepted again on the next possession by Dre Greenlaw and did not lead the Bucs to a score until a deflected TD pass to Russell Gage late in the third quarter.

Brady went 34 for 55 for 253 yards with a TD and both interceptions.

Despite the lackluster performance, the Bucs still have a one-game lead over Atlanta and Carolina in the NFC South and are in line for a home playoff game if they close it out.


The Bucs had a few big plays nullified by penalties in the first half with Brady’s 68-yard TD to Mike Evans wiped out by a hold on tackle Donovan Smith in the first quarter and Anthony Nelson’s interception carried away on a defensive grip against Carlton Davis. .

It was the 10th penalty of the season against Smith, with three of those negative touchdowns.

The flag against Davis was immediately followed by Purdy’s TD pass to Aiyuk to make it 28-0 with 15 seconds left in the first half.


Purdy’s long touchdown pass to McCaffrey was initially ruled a catch, then announced as an incompleteness before officials announced they were going to review the play because McCaffrey blew the ball up.

With no clear evidence that McCaffrey’s second foot struck out of bounds before he had control of the ball, referee Brad Allen announced that the initial call for a TD would stand.


Bucs: NT Vita Vea (calf), CB Zyon McCollum (concussion), CB Jamel Dean (toe) and LB Joe Tryon-Shoyinka (hip) are all injured.

49ers: San Francisco lost Samuel, DT Kevin Givens (knee), CB Samuel Womack (head), CB Dontae Johnson (knee), and DL Kerry Hyder Jr. (ankle).


Bucs: Host Cincinnati on Sunday.

49ers: Visit Seattle Thursday night with a chance to take the NFC West with a win.

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