Strong seasons by such players as Josh Freeman, Vincent Jackson, Doug Martin and Lavonte David helped carry the 2012 Buccaneers into playoff contention entering the season’s final month. That playoff chase is now over for Tampa Bay, but that doesn’t diminish the accomplishments of the team’s top producers. In fact, while it is certainly not high on their list of personal priorities for the final two weeks of the season, several Bucs will be chasing significant franchise milestones in the coming days.
Martin, of course, has already surpassed the Buccaneers’ rookie single-season records for rushing yards (1,250 so far) and rushing touchdowns (11), beating the marks of Cadillac Williams in 2005 (1,178) and Lars Tate in 1988 (eight), respectively. Martin has several other milestones within sight, as do a handful of his teammates. Here are the statistical marks they will be chasing down the stretch, as well as a few they’ve already locked down:
RB Doug Martin
- With 1,250 rushing yards, needs just 51 more to surpass James Wilder in 1985 (1,300) for the second-highest total in team history. Wilder’s team record of 1,544 yards in 1984 is probably safe.
- With 11 total touchdowns, is already tied with Mike Williams’ mark from 2010 and needs just one more to break the record.
- With 1,647 combined rushing and receiving yards, has already surpassed Wilder’s 1,641 from 1985 for the second-best total in team annals. Again, Wilder’s record of 2,229 combined yards from 1984 will stand at least one more year.
WR Vincent Jackson
- With 1,226 receiving yards, is already fifth on the team’s single season list, with all but the top spot a good bet to fall this Sunday. Up next is Antonio Bryant’s 1,248 from 2008; Keyshawn Johnson’s 1,266 from 2001; and Joey Galloway’s 1,287 from 2005. The Bucs’ single-season record is 1,422, set by Mark Carrier in 1989, and Jackson is currently on pace for 1,401.
- With an average of 19.7 yards per catch, is within sight of the team record of 22.1, set by Kevin House in 1980. Jackson’s current mark, if maintained, would be the best ever for a Buc with at least 50 receptions.
QB Josh Freeman
- With 25 touchdown passes, has already tied his own 2010 mark as the second-best single-season total in team history. Needs just one more to tie and two to surpass Brad Johnson’s team record of 26 from 2003.
- With 3,471 passing yards through 14 games, is on pace for 3,966 by season’s end, which would be a new team record. The current mark is 3,811, also by Johnson in 2003. Freeman’s current mark is already the fourth-best total in team history.
LB Lavonte David
- With 124 tackles, already owns the third-best total in franchise history by a rookie, and needs just three more to surpass Mason Foster’s 126 from last season for the second spot on the list. The record of 151 by Hugh Green in 1981 is a longshot, but not totally out of reach, as David would need to average 14 tackles over the last two games to surpass it.
P Michael Koenen
- Already owns the team record with 53 touchbacks forced on kickoffs.
- With a gross average of 45.20 yards per punt, is close to setting the team record in that category. Josh Bidwell set the mark at 45.57 in 2005; Koenen’s current mark would be the second highest in team history.