Thursday, November 23, 2017
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs' Winston, Martin up for weekly NFL awards

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TAMPA — Sunday's record-breaking performances by Bucs QB Jameis Winston and RB Doug Martin have both in contention for the NFL's top weekly honors.

Winston, who has already won NFL rookie of the week honors twice, is one of five nominees this week, having matched an NFL rookie record with five touchdown passes in Sunday's 45-17 win at the Eagles. A win there would be the fifth by a Bucs rookie in their 10 games, with LB Kwon Alexander also winning honors twice.

Winston and Martin are each nominated for one half of the league's players of the week awards. Martin rushed for 235 yards, the most by any player in the league since he rushed for 251 as a rookie in 2012. His breakout game included an 84-yard run that is the longest in team history, and a 58-yard run to set up a touchdown.

All three awards are decided by fan voting online, and the Bucs could pick up conference honors as well, with LB Lavonte David a strong candidate for the defensive nod after intercepting two passes and returning one for his first career touchdown.

HELPING OUT: The annual "Turkey Time for the O-Line" tradition continued Tuesday night, with Bucs linemen passing out Thanksgiving meals to 750 area families. In the event's nine years, more than 5,500 meals have been donated.

OPPORTUNITY: The Bucs are still seeking their first 300-yard game from Winston, and Sunday he'll face a Colts defense that ranks 29th in passing defense, allowing of 279 passing yards per game. The Colts are also 30th in the NFL in sacks with just 14 in their 10 games. One area to watch is interceptions: the Colts have 13, the fifth-highest total in the NFL.

THIS AND THAT: The Bucs jumped to No. 12 in the weekly power rankings from ESPN and NFL Network, showing how close to a playoff team they could be with six games left. … Tampa Bay has already rushed for more yards in 10 games (1,422) than the Bucs did all of last season (1,375), while rushing 49 fewer times than they finished with in 2014.

Contact Greg Auman at [email protected] and (813) 310-2690. Follow @gregauman.

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