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Doug Martin Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2023

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Bucs HC Lovie Smith says the team will "lean on" RB Doug Martin as its "bell cow."  Explained Smith, "At the running back position, there are enough reps to go along. We want three guys we feel comfortable with. Two will play, but it's not a rotation that where every series we're going to have a different guy in there."  RBs Mike James and Bobby Rainey will battle for #2 duties, but the backfield will belong to Martin.  Almost fully recovered from last year's season-ending shoulder injury, he has major bounce-back potential in 2014.  Martin is still only 25.

Buccaneers RB Doug Martin told the Tampa Bay Times that his shoulder feels "great" and that he's ready to make a full return to action.  "My arm is about to get cleared this week," he said. "I'm just getting my strength back. It's been too long since I've been out of the game."  Martin endured a rough start to last season -- as all fantasy owners know -- but he played in a moribund offense behind a bad line.  He'll return this spring to find a new coaching staff, new starting QB and several new linemen.  And Martin's still the guy that Tampa drafted in the 1st round, even if it was a whole different Bucs staff.  Martin still carries RB1 upside, especially with new HC Lovie Smith calling him the Bucs' "bell cow."  "At the running back position, there's enough reps to go around," Smith told the Times.  "We want three guys we feel comfortable with.  Two will play, but it's not a rotation that where every series we're going to have a different guy in there. We'll have a starter, then we'll have a backup that will give him quality backup minutes."

Bucs OC Jeff Tedford discussed his backfield philosophy in his introductory press conference on Wednesday.  And it's decidedly committee-based  "When I was at (the University of California) we were always very fortunate to have two very good backs, whether it was J.J. Arrington and Marshawn Lynch or Lynch and Justin Forsett, or Lynch and Jahvid Best or Jahvid Best and Shane Vereen," Tedford said.  “We really had a good one-two punch in the backfield there and I think that’s what you need. For one guy to carry the load the whole time, especially as physical as this level is, is a lot. So (we’re looking) to have two and probably three backs that can provide different things for you."  Only 2 RBs topped 252 carries in Tedford's 11 seasons at Cal.  Six of those seasons saw 2 RBs reach triple-digit carries.  Tedford's lead RBs averaged 227 carries and 49.5% of the team's total rushes.  By comparison, Doug Martin received 76.7% of Tampa's carries back in 2012.  No Cal RB under Tedford ever reached even 70%.  In Mike James and Bobby Rainey -- who both showed well this past season -- the Bucs have a couple guys to take some carries off Martin's plate.  Martin will remain the clear lead back in 2014, but don't expect him to carry 319 times like he did in 2012.

The Bucs have hired longtime Cal coach Jeff Tedford to run the offense under new HC Lovie Smith.  Tedford comes with no NFL experience.  Before his 11 years at the helm in Berkley, he built his reputation as QBs coach and OC at Fresno State and then Oregon.  Tedford helped groom QBs such as Trent Dilfer and Billy Volek in Fresno; Joey Harrington, Akili Smith and A.J. Feeley at Oregon; and then Kyle Boller and Aaron Rodgers at Cal.  After Rodgers left in the 2004 draft, however, Tedford closed out his stint with a string of shaky-to-bad QBs.  It's also worth noting that among the 5 first-round NFL picks mentioned above, only Rodgers turned into a good pro.  We like the early outlook for Bucs RB Doug Martin.  Tedford's Cal offenses ranged mostly from balanced to run-favoring.  We'll see if his "QB guru" background can resurface in an assistant's role and help Mike Glennon's development.

The Bucs have fired HC Greg Schiano.  GM Mark Dominik has been canned, too.  Tampa won 4 of its last 8 games after starting 0-8, but it wasn't enough to save Schiano's job.  He went 11-21 in 2 seasons with the Bucs.  We'll see how the new coaching staff feels about QB Mike Glennon, who flashed plenty of potential this season.  RB Doug Martin figures to remain the focal point of the offense.

The Bucs have placed RB Doug Martin on IR, officially ending his 2013 season.  He's expected to undergo shoulder surgery within the next few weeks but should be ready for the start of the offseason program.  It's a fitting end to a miserable sophomore season for Martin.  He averaged just 3.6 yards per carry with 1 TD across 6 games.  We'll see what the Bucs do at QB and with their coaching staff this offseason, but Martin will likely be a prime bounce-back candidate in 2013.  He'll be a versatile, fresh, 25-year-old back who should remain the focal point of his team's offense.  Mike James will serve as Tampa's lead back for the remainder of this season.

Bucs insider Rick Stroud reports that the Bucs are "leaning toward" placing RB Doug Martin on season-ending IR.  He'd then undergo shoulder surgery "within the next few weeks."  Stroud says a final decision is expected before Monday night's game against the Dolphins.  If you've been hanging on to Martin, it makes sense to keep hanging for another few days.  If he's not placed on IR by Monday, that'd mean the Bucs expect him to play again this season.

The Bucs have yet to decide whether RB Doug Martin (shoulder) will play again this season.  "It’s just a matter of dealing with Doug and our trainers and our doctors," HC Greg Schiano said.  "Is he okay to play? Is it in his best interest? Does it affect him negatively if we do the surgery at the end of the year or now? If at any moment it affects him negatively, then we’ll do it now."  Martin would need to pass pain and functionality thresholds in order to be cleared to play.  He's reportedly seeing improvement in both areas. "The pain's decreasing and the function, the range of motion, is increasing as well," Martin said Wednesday.  He's obviously not where he needs to be, though, so the Bucs remain in wait-and-see mode.  Meanwhile, fantasy owners are left with an albatross on their roster.  We're still betting against Martin playing again this season, so he can be dropped if you're desperate for bye-week help.

Bucs HC Greg Schiano confirmed that RB Doug Martin will need surgery on his shoulder "at some point."  We still can't figure out why the 0-8 Bucs haven't decided to have Martin go under the knife already.  There's no reason to put it off in hopes of him returning this season.  Martin remains a long shot to play again this year.  He's been ruled out for Week 9.

Fox Sports' Alex Marvez hears that Bucs RB Doug Martin could be out "2 weeks to 2 months."  It's just the latest ambiguous report we've heard on Martin's status.  It sounds like he'll spend the next couple weeks strengthening and stabilizing that shoulder before attempting to return.  We still wonder why the Bucs would run their offensive centerpiece back on the field when their season is already over.

The Bucs are "optimistic" that RB Doug Martin (shoulder) will play again this season, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.  Martin will reportedly spend the next couple weeks strengthening the shoulder, while targeting a Week 10 return against the Dolphins on Monday Night Football.  "If Doug Martin experiences a setback on his shoulder, Bucs'll shut him down," Rapoport adds.  This remains a fluid situation, but Martin is worth hanging on to in all fantasy leagues.

Bucs RB Doug Martin describes himself as "day-to-day" with the torn labrum he suffered last Sunday.  He added that the pain in his shoulder has diminished and that his range of motion is improving.  Both he and the Bucs seem optimistic that Martin will play again this season.  We're still skeptical, especially since Tampa has essentially already been eliminated from playoff contention.  Until Martin lands on IR, though, we'd recommend hanging on to him in fantasy if you have the space on your roster.

Bucs HC Greg Schiano confirmed that the team does not believe RB Doug Martin's torn labrum is season ending.  Schiano didn't provide a timetable, only saying that it'd be a "stretch" for Martin to play against the Panthers on Thursday night.  Fantasy owners need to hang on to Martin for now.  But they should also be preparing to be without him the rest of the way.  Even if Martin is able to return, Tampa would be wise to play it extra safe with him with their season in the tank.

Insider Rick Stroud reports that the Bucs won't place RB Doug Martin (shoulder) on IR yet.  There's reportedly some hope that he can avoid surgery on the torn labrum and return at some point this season.  We'd consider that unlikely since the 0-6 Bucs should already be looking toward 2014, but Martin might be worth hanging onto in fantasy leagues until we get confirmation that he's done for the year.

Fox Sports' Mike Garafolo reports that Bucs RB Doug Martin is out for the season with a torn labrum.  The 2nd-year back has averaged just 3.6 yards per carry but was still central to Tampa's offense.  Martin had carried 23.2 times per game before leaving yesterday's game early.  6th-round rookie Mike James will now be thrust into the lead role.  He managed just 45 yards on his 14 carries on Sunday and doesn't figure to be much more efficient going forward.  James is considered a capable pass-catcher, though, so he can bolster his fantasy production there.  He's at least worth rostering as a RB3 or flex option.  Meanwhile, the Bucs figure to go more pass-heavy going forward.  It's good news for WRs Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams.  Rookie Mike Glennon is on the 2-QB league radar.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport hears that Bucs RB Doug Martin's shoulder injury is "serious" and could keep him out "several weeks or longer."  We'll hopefully learn more in HC Greg Schiano's press conference later today, but owners need to start preparing to be without their 1st-round pick for the foreseeable future.  Rookie Mike James would take over as Tampa's lead back if Martin misses time.  He's a mediocre talent in a bad spot, but 15+ touches per game would at least make him a RB3 or flex option.

Bucs RB Doug Martin's x-rays came back negative.  That rules out a broken shoulder or collarbone.  He'll undergo additional testing tomorrow, though, and isn't out of the woods yet.  Martin was in a sling after the game.  Even if he avoided a serious injury, he'll be stretched to be ready for Thursday night's game against the Panthers.  Mike James will step in as Tampa's lead back if Martin is out.

Bucs RB Doug Martin left in the 3rd quarter of Sunday's game with a shoulder injury.  He took a hard on a pass play down the left sideline.  Martin was taken back to the locker room and is being called questionable to return.

Bucs RB Doug Martin racked up 368 total touches last year.  Only Arian Foster and Adrian Peterson had more.  Martin could see even more action in 2013.  He'll continue to be the focal point of Tampa's offense.  And unlike last year, Martin will stay on the field on 3rd downs.  He played only "sparingly" there last year, according to the Tampa Tribune.  "I want to improve on my route running and my blocking," Martin said. "To be an every-down back in this league, you need to pass protect.”  Martin's massive workload is 1 of the reasons we like him as the #2 pick in fantasy drafts.

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