Rookie running back Doug Martin had a historic day against the Oakland Raiders, rushing for over 200 yards, and four touchdowns.Photo Credit: USAtoday.com
Tampa Bay Buccaneers rookie running back Doug Martin, born in Oakland, had one of those memorable games in his homecoming. In Week 9 against the Raiders, Martin’ scampered for 251 rushing yards on 25 carries, four of which went for touchdowns.
220 of Martin’s 251 yards came on his carries in the second half, as did all four of his touchdowns. Martin’s four touchdowns came on rushes of 45, 67, 70, and finally one yard, all of which were a piece of art. He was juking th Raiders out of their shoes left and right.
This week marked Martin’s second consecutive game with over 200 all-purpose yards after his explosion in Minneapolis last Thursday night, where he rushed for over 130 yards and caught a 64-yard touchdown pass. Martin has four touchdowns of more than 45 yards in just two games. It’s also the first time since at least 1940 that a running back has scored on three rushes of 45 yards or more, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
In almost any other year, Martin might be a front-runner for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. However, with the talent at quarterback in Andrew Luck, who broke the rookie single-game passing record, and Robert Griffin III, it’s looking unlikely – if not impossible – that Doug Martin will take home that honor.
Likely the most important part of this game for Martin was the victory, as his Bucs took down the Raiders 42-32, led, obviously, by Martin. They advanced to 4-4 on the season and are in the hunt for a wild card spot behind only the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC South.
Note: The final box score is a bit deceiving in this one. Martin rushed 22 times for 265 yards before the last drive, when he rushed three times for -14 yards. Without those three rushes where the Raiders stacked the box, his stats look much more impressive. Nonetheless, it was a historic day for the rookie.
By: Christian Hardy- Down and Distance Contributor
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