TAMPA — Battling rib and ankle injuries, Tampa Bay quarterback Baker Mayfield threw for 337 yards and three touchdowns to defeat the Philadelphia Eagles 32-9 in the wild-card round, securing the Buccaneers’ largest playoff win since their 27-point Super Bowl XXXVII victory, despite being 3.5-point home underdogs Monday night.

“There’s something about whether it’s you’re an underdog or [on] a road game, just having your backs against the wall and knowing it’s just your team versus everybody else when you’re counted out,” said Mayfield, who became the first Buccaneer to throw for 300 yards and three touchdowns in a postseason game — a feat not even his predecessor, Tom Brady, was able to accomplish in three years with Tampa. “It’s always fun to be in that role. Obviously I’m pretty comfortable in it, but our team has completely embraced that throughout the year.”

On top of that, he was fighting a rib injury sustained two weeks ago in a loss to the New Orleans Saints, and then an ankle injury he suffered at Carolina last week. Mayfield flew in his personal physiotherapist twice this week to help him work through the injuries, which limited his practice time.

“He gutted it out,” Bucs coach Todd Bowles said. “I mean, if you looked at him during the week — he was limping around, he wasn’t practicing, he was getting a little better each day — hopefully they didn’t hit him too much. I know they got some shots on him and they got what, four sacks? So he came back from that, he stayed with the plan, he never flinched, and he made play after play after play, and that says a whole lot about him.”

Despite six drops from his receiving targets in the first half alone, including three from tight end Cade Otton, Mayfield kept the energy positive and encouraging on the sideline.

“He was sharp. I mean, the whole game he was sharp. … They dropped some passes, but he kept coming back, he kept going to them,” Bowles said.

“He’s always encouraging,” said Otton, who led the Bucs with 89 receiving yards. “I feel like we as a team just take on his character. Just always competing, always has that fire. We’re seeing it come together, we’re getting better as far as executing. We’re never out of the fight. We’re always going to compete just like he does.”

After 28-yard field goal on the opening drive from Bucs kicker Chase McLaughlin, Mayfield found seldom-used wide receiver David Moore on a crossing route for a 44-yard touchdown to take a 10-0 lead. McLaughlin followed with 54- and 48-yard field goals in the second quarter. A third-quarter safety from Anthony Nelson provided a much-needed jolt, as Mayfield connected with rookie Trey Palmer on a 56-yard touchdown two plays later. Then he hooked up with wide receiver Chris Godwin down the middle on a 23-yard score in the fourth.

“I love playing with Baker,” outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett said. “I knew Baker was going to be special for us once he won the job. I saw it from when he first got into the league. He just needed to be healthy and a good opportunity. And I think he got that with us, and he’s showing what he can do with it and I love what I’m seeing from him.”

Moments after jogging off the field at Raymond James Stadium with a triumphant “Let’s go!” Mayfield was asked to compare the victory to that of his 48-37 playoff win against the Pittsburgh Steelers when he was with the Cleveland Browns in 2020.

Mayfield shrugged his shoulders and gave a brief pause. “Pretty good,” he said, before revealing a mischievous grin and cracking a smile.

Was it even sweeter after the journey he’d been on over the past year? After being traded away by the Browns in July 2022, cut by the Panthers in December of that year and signed to the Los Angeles Rams for five games before the Bucs signed him this offseason to a one-year deal worth $4 million?

“Yeah, I mean I don’t like to directly compare,” Mayfield said. “But yeah, obviously the ups and downs that I’ve been through the last few years, this one’s great … but our sights are set for bigger goals, so on to the next one.”

The next one will be on the road, against the Detroit Lions in the divisional round, with the Bucs once again the underdogs. The Lions are currently 6-point favorites after defeating the Los Angeles Rams 24-23 on Sunday night.

The Bucs lost to the Lions 20-6 when they hosted them in Week 6.

“We don’t really think or care about what the outside says,” Otton said. “We know the quality of players we have in the locker room, the quality of people, the coaches, the whole entire organization.”

“It’s a revenge tour,” added inside linebacker Devin White. “Everybody in this locker room, we believe in one another, and that’s all that matters. People are going to talk on TV, they’re going to make their predictions. But at the end of the day, the ball has to be placed and we have to go out there and play. What people say doesn’t determine the outcome.”