The scoring see-sawed back in the Buccaneers direction in the third quarter, and Tampa Bay carries a slim 24-23 lead into the fourth quarter.
Josh Freeman kept a Bucs' drive alive by sneaking over his center on a fourth-and-inches situation in San Diego territory, then converted with a touchdown pass to Tiquan Underwood. Freeman now has completed 12-of-17 passes for 191 yards and two scores.
The only other moment of note in the third quarter was when Buccaneers linebacker Quincy Black had to be carted from the field in a stretcher after Chargers running back Ryan Mathews drilled the side of his head with his helmet.
Black appeared to have movement in all of his extremities, but the sixth-year player did have to be stabilized on a board. Mathews was uninjured in the brutal helmet-to-helmet collision.
The Chargers were moving the ball steadily through the air once again at the end of the half.