Doug Martin had without a doubt his best game of his young career on Sunday in Oakland when he exploded for over 250 yards rushing and three massive touchdowns on the way to leading the Bucs to a 4-4 start and evening Tampa’s record at .500.
Tampa needed all three of Martin’s touchdowns as the defense crumbled late to allow a one time 35-17 lead disintegrate to a 35-32 game — a very winnable margin for the Raiders.
There’s no question this offense is primed for a massive future with weapons all over the place that could at anytime blowup on you. Lost in the Dougie was a great day by both Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams, who both scored. Jackson went for alomst 90 yards on one drive while Williams was found in the back of the endzone once again.
What made this even more impressive is this massive offensive performance is coming on the heels of losing All-Pro tackle Carl Nicks and without Pro-Bowl guard Davin Joseph.
At one point this was a low scoring 10-7 game at the half. But in the second half Doug Martin went berzerker on the Raiders and nearly broke a record held by Adrian Peterson. Peterson set the single game rushing record back in 2007, and Martin nearly got to that mark.
But instead he’ll have to settle for the 8th best rushing performance of all-time. The mark was made even more personal as Martin was performing in front of as many as 90 family members and friends. Martin grew up in the Bay Area and made Sunday his first return home since being drafted into the NFL.
Martin has officially thrown his hat into the Rookie of the Year running, and if he keeps barreling through defenses like this, it’s not that hard to fathom him winning the award. There is definitely things that need to be fixed on this team, but once the defense gets shored up, this team is going to be dangerous as time goes on.