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One thing you can say about Mike Evans is that he never makes the same mistake twice. That was evident in the third quarter of Monday’s 30-10 win over the New York Giants when the Buccaneers star receiver became the all-time leading touchdown scorer in franchise history with his 5-yard reception from Tom Brady. To Evans’ credit, he had the wherewithal to know that he had just made the record-setting catch and actually hung onto the historic football this time around.
That wasn’t the case back in Week 7 when Evans was on the receiving end of Tom Brady’s 600th touchdown pass, a mark that had never been achieved by a quarterback in NFL history. After Evans hauled in that momentous touchdown, he gave the football to a fan in the stands at Raymond James Stadium, forgetting the historic significance that the ball held. Once he got back to the sideline, he exclaimed, “Oooooh, I gave the ball away!” That then led to a negotiation between the fan, Brady, and the Buccaneers to retrieve the milestone ball that resulted in the fan receiving a number of items, including a Bitcoin from Brady.
Fortunately for Evans and the Bucs, there was no need to go back to the negotiating table with another fan as he hung onto the ball to keep as he ascended into Tampa Bay’s record books.
Evans passed Mike Alstott’s long-standing record with his 72nd-career touchdown as he helped Tampa Bay snap a two-game losing skid. While all of Evans’ 72 touchdowns have come as a receiver, 58 of Alstott’s 71 scores came on the ground and 13 through the air.