The last time the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won a road game, they rallied from 20 points down to beat the Vikings in the Metrodome 24-20 a little over a year ago. They snapped a nine game road losing streak in that very same building, pounding the VIkings into the turf in Minneapolis 37-17.
Doug Martin without a doubt had the best game of his young career, rushing for over 135 yards and a pair of touchdowns in a game that saw the rookie total well over 200 all purpose yards. Martin also became the first Bucs running back since Warrick Dunn to both rush for and catch a touchdown in the same game.
Dunn accomplished as much back in 2001 in a game against the Titans.
The crowd at the Metrodome was rocking at numerous points in the game, but despite the ferocity of the home crowd, the Buccaneers never trailed once during the game. They went up 10-0 early in the first quarter and never looked back. The closest the Vikings came to Bucs was when the score was 13-7 after Christian Ponder threw a beautiful touchdown pass to Percy Harvin.
After that, the Buccaneers pulled away from the Vikings in devastating fashion, using Martin’s career day to torch the now 5-3 Minnesota Vikings.
Josh Freeman had a great day, marking the third straight game he threw for three touchdowns in a single game and the second game in a row that didn’t see a Freeman interception. Through all the massive stats Freeman has had in the past weeks, nothing is bigger than his 6-0 TD to INT ratio over the last two games.
The Buccaneers are now 3-4 on the season and this was by far their most decisive victory all year long. Sure, the game against the Chiefs was great but the Vikings are — or were– in first place in a harsh NFC North division. This doesn’t mean the Buccaneers are going to run the table, but it’s a serious confidence booster for a young team that is starting grow into a serious threat in the NFC.