Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman threw for three touchdowns and running back Doug Martin accounted for more than 200 total yards of offense as the Buccaneers topped the Minnesota Vikings on the road Thursday, 36-17.
After both teams struggled out of the gate to get any offense going, Tampa Bay struck first with a Freeman touchdown strike to Erik Lorig to give the Bucs a 10-0 lead they would never relent to the Vikings.
Martin first struck for a big chunk of yards that led to the Bucs' first score — the first of three Connor Barth field goals on the night — on a 41-yard rush early in the first quarter. Martin was just getting started on the night, as he would later take a screen pass from Freeman 64 yards to the endzone.
Then, in the fourth quarter, Martin's 1-yard touchdown rush all but put away the game for the night, putting the Buccaneers ahead by the final score, 36-17, after a failed two-point conversion.
Freeman ended the night with 262 yards and his three scores, while five different receivers accounted for 25 or more yards through the air. Receiver Mike Williams caught a well-placed touchdown in the second quarter to help Tampa Bay to a 20-10 lead at half.
Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder was able to convert a touchdown pass to Percy Harvin in the second quarter, but it was running back Adrian Peterson who held the offensive keys to the Vikings attack on the night. Peterson rushed for 123 yards and a touchdown in the loss.