Tampa Bay Buccaneers

45 Points a Milestone for Buccaneers' Offense

Stat Shots presented by Air Force Reserve: The Bucs' 45 points and 521 total net yards vs. the Eagles are among the best in franchise history.


The most difficult part about this week's statistical roundup is figuring out where to begin. Buccaneer players like Jameis Winston, Doug Martin and Lavonte David were setting records and hitting milestones at such a dizzying pace in Philadelphia that it was hard to keep up. Let's try to bring a little clarity to all of Sunday's crazy numbers, starting with the big picture.

The 45 points scored by the Buccaneers marked their third-highest total in a single game and their high-water mark in 14 years. The Bucs last scored at least 45 points in a 48-21 thrashing of New Orleans on Dec. 23, 2001. That actually tied the team record for points scored in a game, first set in the 1987 season opener as the Bucs throttled the Atlanta Falcons, 48-10, on Sept. 13, 1987. Keen Buccaneer historians will probably remember that there's another game that belongs on that list if we're including the postseason. That would be Tampa Bay's 48-21 roasting of the Oakland Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII on Jan. 26, 2003.

Notably, those two regular-season 48-point games both happened in home games. Even if one includes the Super Bowl, that was a neutral-site contest. That means Sunday's game in Philadelphia was the Buccaneers' biggest points explosion ever in a road game. The previous record was a 42-32 win at Oakland on Nov. 4, 2012…a game that also included a command performance by RB Doug Martin.

The Buccaneers defeated the Eagles by 28 points, their largest margin of victory since a 38-10 win over Kansas City at Raymond James Stadium on Oct. 14, 2012. The Bucs had not won by 28 points or more in a road game since that 2002 Super Bowl season, which included a 35-7 downing of the Bengals in Cincinnati on Sept. 29. Coincidentally, the Buccaneers' largest margin of victory ever in road game was also in Cincinnati. Here are the top 10 most lopsided road wins in franchise history, including Sunday's game in Philadelphia:

  1. at Cincinnati



W, 35-0

2t. at Philadelphia



W, 45-17

2t. at Cincinnati



W, 35-7

  1. at Baltimore



W, 25-0

  1. at Atlanta



W, 31-7

  1. at Washington



W, 35-13

7t. at Atlanta



W, 31-10

7t. at Detroit



W, 31-10

7t. at Atlanta



W, 31-10

  1. at Washington



W, 27-7

The Bucs are now 3-2 on the road in 2015 and still have a chance to tie the team record for most road victories in a season. The '02 Super Bowl team set that mark at 6-2, and it was later tied in 2010. For the most part, simply finishing with a winning record on the road has meant great things for the Buccaneers; they've done that five other times – 1979, 1997, 2002, 2005 and 2010 – and they made the playoffs in all of those seasons except one. The 2010 team finished 10-6 but missed the playoffs on a tiebreaker against the eventual Super Bowl champs, Green Bay.

The Buccaneers compiled their 45 points on six touchdowns and one field goal. That's the fourth time in team history the Bucs have scored at least six touchdowns in a game, and the first since the aforementioned Oakland game in 2012. The wins over the Raiders and Eagles mark the only two times the Bucs have scored six touchdowns in a road game.

Tampa Bay racked up 521 total  net yards in Sunday's win, their second-highest total ever and their most ever in a victory. The team record was set at 573 in a 38-30 loss at Minnesota on Nov. 16, 1980. Interestingly, the most explosive offensive days in team history, in terms of yardage, have not often correlated with victory, making Sunday's win in Philadelphia particularly sweet. Here are top 10 yardage games in Buc history, with the game's outcome noted:

Opp., Date



  1. at MIN, 11/16/80


L, 38-30

2. at PHI, 11/22/15


W, 45-17

  1. at OAK, 11/4/12


W, 42-32

  1. vs. NO, 10/21/12


L, 35-28

  1. at IND, 10/16/88


L, 35-31

  1. at WAS, 10/25/15


L, 31-30

  1. at MIA, 10/20/85


L, 41-38

  1. at CIN, 10/29/89


L, 56-23

  1. at CAR, 12/6/09


L, 16-6

10t. at NO, 12/2/07


W, 27-23

10t. vs. IND, 10/3/11


W, 24-17

The Bucs' early-season struggles in the red zone were a distant memory on Sunday. The Buccaneers drove inside the Eagles' 20-yard line six times and came away with five touchdowns and a field goal. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay's defense didn't allow Philadelphia a single incursion into the red zone, as the Eagles' two touchdowns came on receptions of 30-plus yards. Tampa Bay allowed only one red zone trip to Dallas the previous week, and it did not result in a touchdown. Those inside-the-20 numbers are rare. To wit:

  • The last time the Bucs had as many as six red zone trips before Sunday's game was at Kansas City on Nov. 2, 2008. They had six such drives in that game, but only scored two touchdowns and a field goal on them in a 30-27 overtime win.
  • The last time Tampa Bay had as many as five red zone touchdowns before Sunday's game was against Minnesota on Nov. 3, 2002. The Bucs had seven such drive against the Vikings in that game, coming away with five touchdowns in a 38-24 win.
  • The last time the Buccaneers had at least six more red zone trips than their opponent was against Green Bay on Sept. 28, 2008. That game also had a 6-0 differential in that category, with the Bucs prevailing, 30-21.
  • The last time the Buccaneers went two straight games without allowing a single red zone touchdown was the opening fortnight of the 2008 season, at New Orleans and against Atlanta on Sept. 7 and 14.

The Buccaneers found the end zone on their second drive of Sunday's game and never let off the throttle. They scored seven points in the first quarter, 21 in the second, seven in the third and 10 in the fourth. The last time Tampa Bay scored at least one touchdown in every quarter of a game was in a 34-24 win over San Diego on Nov. 11, 2012.

The Buccaneers effectively put the game away with a 15-play, 80-yard touchdown drive that ate up almost all of the first 10 minutes of the second half. That was the longest drive for the Buccaneers in terms of plays since a 15-play touchdown drive at Atlanta last year on Sept. 18.

Specifically, that drive lasted for nine minutes and 47 seconds, culminating in Jameis Winston's eight-yard touchdown pass to TE Cameron Brate. It took that long to travel 80 yards because the Bucs had to overcome five offensive penalties along the way. Winston called that drive the key to the game, and it certainly was impressive. In fact, it was the longest touchdown drive for the Buccaneers in terms of time-elapsed in more than 20  years. Craig Erickson led a touchdown drive against New Orleans on Sept. 18, 1994 that took 10 minutes and 59 seconds off the clock, setting a team record that still stands. Coincidentally, that drive also covered 80 yards on 15 plays. Sunday's extended march was the longest one for the Bucs sent that one against the Saints in 1994.

Tampa Bay's scoring explosion included touchdown drives that covered 75, 85, 80 and 80 yards. According to the data collected by Pro Football Reference, that marks the first time since at least 1998 that the Buccaneers have put together four touchdown drives of at least 75 yards in the same game. The PFR drive database does not go back farther than 1998.

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