The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the New Orleans Saints 21-17 in a first-round matchup of the B/R GOAT Sim on Madden NFL 20.
Even in a simulation, the New Orleans Saints endured last-second heartbreak in a must-win game. Quarterback Drew Brees was on fire all day, putting together 20 consecutive completions until the one he needed the most fell short.
On third down late in the fourth quarter, Brees was nearly picked off in the end zone, forcing the Saints to kick a field goal to go up 17-14 with time running out. However, New Orleans' defense couldn't stop Tampa Bay quarterback Doug Williams, who connected with Mike Evans to move the ball across midfield and set up a touchdown to Jimmie Giles with 34 seconds remaining to go up 21-17.
By the time Brees got the ball back, he had only 30 seconds with which to work. That's usually more than enough for one of the greatest quarterbacks of all-time, but he couldn't avoid another late-game disaster, getting intercepted in the end zone as time expired.
Brees finished the game 23-of-26, but those three misses came back to haunt the Saints.
On the other side of the field, Williams replaced starter Jameis Winston midway through the first half and immediately connected with Evans on a 57-yard touchdown to take a 14-7 lead into the break.
While the offensive stars were the main attraction—Brees hit tight end Jimmy Graham for a touchdown in the second quarter, providing a nice wave of nostalgia—defensive end Cameron Jordan might have been the player of the game for New Orleans. He finished with two sacks and a forced fumble and was a major reason Winston struggled.
The most puzzling move came from Saints head coach Sean Payton, who called his field-goal unit out for a 61-yard attempt on the opening drive. It did not work.
The Bucs now move on to face the Carolina Panthers, who defeated the Atlanta Falcons in the first round as the B/R GOAT Sim gets ready to crown an NFC South champion and move onto the elite eight.
All B/R GOAT Sim games are available to watch on Bleacher Report's Twitch channel.