Josh Freeman led Tampa Bay (6-4, 2-1 NFC South) 80 yards in 50 seconds to tie the game with 12 seconds remaining. He then led the Buccaneers 80 yards on the first possession of overtime for a game-winning touchdown to win 27-21 in a divisional game over the host Carolina Panthers (2-8, 1-3 NFC South).

Freeman was 25 of 46 passing for 248 yards and three touchdowns as Tampa won its fourth straight game. Freeman passed for 65 yards on the game-tying drive and was 3 of 3 for 32 yards on the game-winning drive, which culminated in a 15-yard touchdown pass to TE Dallas Clark.

When the game turned: Leading by eight, Carolina converted one first down on a difficult Louis Murphy catch with three minutes remaining. Nearly two minutes later, with the Bucs out of time outs, Newton was stopped a yard short on a third-and-12 run. Carolina punted, after leaving Tampa just enough time.

Highlight moments: With Tampa leading 10-0 in the first quarter, DT Dwan Edwards hit Freeman as he threw. The ball floated wide of Clark and into the arms of CB Captain Munnerlyn, who took the ball 30 yards for his second interception-return touchdown of the season. … Early in the fourth quarter, Tampa passed up a field goal on fourth-and-one from the 2, trailing by four. RB Doug Martin got the first down but fumbled at the goal line. Panthers LB Luke Kuechly recovered. … With 12 seconds left and Tampa trailing by 8, Freeman threw over the middle into double coverage. Vincent Jackson pulled in the 24-yard touchdown pass between S Charles Godfrey and Kuechly. Freeman then found Jackson on the two-point conversion when Kuechly and Munnerlyn bit on a play fake to Martin.

Top-shelf performances:

  • Buccaneers RB Martin -- 24 carries for 138 yards, including 48 yards in overtime

  • Buccaneers WR Jackson -- 6 catches for 94 yards

What they said about Jackson’s TD catch­:

  • Panthers coach Ron Rivera -- “We didn’t see that 83 was at the three-position. We didn’t make a play on that. We’ve got to understand where they’re throwing the ball and who they’re going to."

What they said about a 15-yard personal foul penalty on LB Thomas Davis at the start of the Bucs’ game-tying drive:

  • Rivera -- “Not only was it a 15-yard penalty, but it stopped the clock and gave them a chance to reset. … It’s a tough call. Thomas came and made a football play. Are we supposed to miss and let him catch the ball clean? The receiver was going down, Thomas was coming across, and I didn’t think he hit him helmet-to-helmet, but the referee made a judgment call.”

What they said about Newton coming up a yard short on an 11-yard run on third-and-12 with just over a minute left:

  • Panthers C Geoff Hangartner -- “We had our four-minute offense and we picked up one first down. If we had gotten another yard on third and long, but we came up short. We didn’t do our defense any favors.”

  • Panthers T Jordan Gross -- "That obviously would have won the game for us."

  • Rivera -- “In the four-minute, you can’t have a negative play. We put ourselves in third-and-long. We did it to ourselves.”

Numbers you should know: The Panthers had 10 yards of offense before Munnerlyn’s interception in the first quarter and 323 afterward. … Before his carry to the goal line in the fourth quarter, Martin had no fumbles this season.

Injury update: Buccaneers -- CB Eric Wright left the game with a left ankle injury in the second half. … Panthers -- DEs Greg Hardy and Charles Johnson left the game in the first half after both players collided trying to get a sack. Both returned. WR Steve Smith also left the game briefly with an arm injury.

Going forward: Buccaneers -- Tampa has two tough games. The Bucs host Atlanta in a division game, then travel to Denver. Panthers -- Carolina hits the road for a Monday Night Football game against Philadelphia, followed by a trip to Kansas City.

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the Carolina Panthers from blogger Shawn Krest, follow @CBSPanthers.

For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from blogger Patrick Southern, follow @CBSBuccaneers.