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Winston: To win games, Evans needs to get the ball

Goose eggs are jealous of Mike Evans' production last week.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' receiver earned zero receptions on three targets in the loss to the New Orleans Saints.

The Bucs know they can't succeed with their star target not catching a pass.

"Bottom line, to win football games, we've got to get Mike Evans the ball," quarterback Jameis Winston said, via the Tampa Bay Times.

The Saints -- who have now shut out Evans twice in his career, the only team to do so in his career -- shadowed Evans with corner Marcus Lattimore, but it wasn't true man-to-man, and instead played a lot of Cover-2 and zone schemes, the receiver noted while rehashing his nightmarish game.

"It seems like the same picture," Evans said. "I'd seen (Lattimore) and (safety Marcus Williams) to my side the whole game, about 80 percent of the game. I guess I have to do a better job of getting open. I don't know. I guess I have to move around a little bit."

The positive for Tampa: The last time Evans was shut out in his career, he followed it up with a seven-reception, 101-receiving-yard (17 targets) day in Week 3, 2015 at Texans (Winston's rookie year).

As he did last time, Winston could force-feed Evans the ball Sunday in London against the Carolina Panthers.

"I think (it's on) everybody, me, the coaches. I think everybody can help get him more involved, get him the football," Winston said. "We've just got to get him the ball. There's nothing much else to say to it."

With Evans garnering attention, Chris Godwin has busted out, gobbling up yards, catches, and touchdowns. If the Panthers focus on taking out Evans again, could a similar pattern arise or will at some point defenses adjust to Godwin, allowing Evans more favorable matchups?

In his career, Evans has averaged 22.4 fewer receiving yards per game versus divisional opponents than all other teams, per NFL Research: 4.4 receptions per game, 65.0 rec YPG vs. NFC South opponents; 5.4 receptions per game, 87.4 rec YPG vs. all other opponents.

Sunday's matchup with the Panthers pits Evans up against lanky corner James Bradberry, who has helped keep Evans quiet in recent tilts. In the Week 2 clash, Evans was held to four receptions for 61 yards (41 of which came on one play). Last season, Evans had just one catch for 16 yards in the first meeting with Carolina, and four for 48 in the second.

"He's a good physical corner," Evans said of Bradberry. "He knows all my routes. Everybody in the division knows every route that I'm going to run already I feel like, and I know how they're going to play it. So, we both have the advantage of playing each other so much."

The winner of that matchup could tell the story of who returns from London with a big divisional W.

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