When Doug Martin was growing up nearby in Stockton, Calif., he couldn’t have dreamed about anything quite like this.
The Buccaneers running back had more than 60 friends and family in the stands at Oakland, and he gave them something to see, running for 251 yards and four touchdowns.
“Just about everybody was here,” Martin said, via Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune. “My mom was here, of course, and a whole bunch of family members and friends. Even some of my teammates from high school were here.
He did more than put on a show, he re-wrote the Bucs record book. Along with his 272 yards from scrimmage, he set new franchise single-game records for rushing yards and touchdowns.
He also joined former Broncos back Mike Anderson as the only backs with 250 yards rushing and four touchdowns in a game, and is the first player since 1940 to score three touchdowns of at least 45 yards.
With nearly 500 total yards the last two games (including a nationally televised one), he’s proving to be the backbone of one of the league’s hottest offense. They became the first team in franchise history to score at least 28 points in four straight games, and they’re up to fifth in the league in scoring.
“It’s huge to have an offense like that,” veteran defensive back Ronde Barber said. “We have forever been the kind of team that just stuck around and stuck around in games. But now we’re taking control of games, we’re scoring a lot of points and that’s big. It’s fun to be on this team and it’s fun to watch a guy like Doug Martin have the kind of games he’s been having here lately.
“We knew as soon as he got here that we had something special with him, so all the praise he’s going to get after this is deserved. The kind of stuff he did today and last week, that stuff gives you a winning edge.”
That he’s able to do it as a first-year player, on a team that’s lost both starting guards to injury, makes it that much more impressive.