Opportunity knocks for rookie running back
Rookie running back Mike James enjoyed his best pro game, gaining 45 yards on 14 carries while displaying his physicality. The sixth-round draft pick out of the University of Miami ran hard all day, showing the forward lean that impressed coaches in training camp.
James did most of his damage after Doug Martin was sidelined, but also contributed early with a stout block vs. blitzing CB Desmond Trufant that bought Mike Glennon enough time to hit Vincent Jackson for a 59-yard TD pass. “You hate to see anyone go down, but it felt good to get out there and help,’’ said James, who had only three carries for 12 yards going into Sunday’s matchup. “From the first time I played football, I always wanted to run with a lean.’’
Doug Martin was having a decent game until he landed on his left shoulder in the third quarter while leaping for an incomplete pass from Mike Glennon deep in Atlanta territory. After the game, Martin’s left arm was in a sling, but he said his shoulder wasn’t separated. “We’re still evaluating it and it feels all right right now,’’ said Martin, who ran for 47 yards on 11 carries. “The X-rays look good so far. I have a little range of motion and I’ll test it out (today). It’s not separated.’’
Safety Dashon Goldson suffered a knee injury in the opening half and briefly returned to the game before leaving for good. Goldson said he didn’t think his injury was serious, but he will be further evaluated today, three days before the Bucs face the Panthers at Raymond James Stadium.