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Rookie RB powers Buccaneers over Raiders

Published On: Nov 04 2012 07:11:01 PM CST
Tampa Bay Buccaneers helmet

NFL

OAKLAND, Calif. -

Rookie running back Doug Martin rushed for a team-record 251 yards and four touchdowns on 25 carries, leading the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a 42-32 victory over the Oakland Raiders at the O.co Coliseum on Sunday.

Martin scored on runs of 45 and 67 yards in the third quarter and 70 yards and 1 yard in the fourth, as the Bucs roared back from a 10-7 halftime deficit for a big win.

The Bucs improved to 4-4, winning for the third time in their past four games. The Raiders fell to 3-5 and lost running back Darren McFadden to a leg injury midway through the second quarter. According to the Raiders, X-rays on McFadden's leg were negative.

Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer completed 39 of 61 passes for 414 yards and four touchdowns, but he was intercepted three times.

The Raiders waged a furious late comeback, overcoming much of a 28-10 third-quarter deficit to pull within 35-32 with 3:51 left to play on Palmer's 13-yard touchdown pass to fullback Marcel Reece and two-point pass to Juron Criner.

But after the Raiders' defense forced a punt, Bucs safety Ahmad Black intercepted a Palmer misfire and returned 34 yards to the Oakland 22. Martin's 1-yard touchdown run increased the Bucs' lead to 42-32 with 1:49 remaining.

The Bucs trailed 10-7 at halftime but quickly moved back ahead early in the third quarter when Martin broke loose for a 45-yard touchdown run. Martin shot over left guard, angled toward the left sideline and outran Raiders safeties Matt Giordano and Tyvon Branch, putting Tampa Bay ahead 14-10 with 12:09 left in the third.

Just minutes later, quarterback Josh Freeman and the Bucs went back to work. On third-and-five from the Tampa Bay 45, Freeman zipped a pass along the right sideline to wide receiver Mike Williams, who cut back across field to the Raiders' 18 for a gain of 37. Williams, as he and Bucs wide-out Vincent Jackson did all day, burned Raiders cornerback Michael Huff on the catch.

The Bucs marched to the Raiders 4, and on second-and-goal, Williams beat Huff in the right corner of the end zone. Freeman hit him with a four-yard touchdown pass that gave Tampa Bay a 21-10 lead with 7:12 remaining in the third.

The Bucs got the ball back when cornerback Leonard Johnson intercepted a Palmer pass at the Tampa Bay 32. Two plays later, Martin shot over left tackle and sprinted 67 yards for a touchdown, putting the Bucs up 28-10 with 2:15 left in the third.

The Raiders cut the lead to 28-17 early in the fourth on Palmer's four-yard pass to tight end Brandon Myers -- his first career touchdown catch.

But on Tampa Bay's next play from scrimmage, Martin ran wild again, sprinting 70 yards for his third touchdown of day as the Bucs extended their lead to 35-17.

Myers' second career touchdown catch, this one a 1-yard pass from Palmer, cut Tampa Bay's lead to 35-24 with 9:48 to play.

The Raiders got the ball back when Freeman and running back LeGarrette Blount botched the exchange, and defensive tackle Richard Seymour recovered at the Oakland 35.

NOTES: The Bucs had three interceptions, one each by Leonard Johnson, Black and cornerback E.J. Biggers. ... Freeman threw two touchdown passes, but his streak of games with three TDs ended at three. ... Giordano suffered a hamstring injury midway through the second half and didn't return. ... Raiders backup running back Mike Goodson, who replaced McFadden, left the game with an ankle injury in the fourth quarter.